I usually play this feature for laughs but egregious malakatude can be terribly serious. There is no good way to notify people that their loved ones are presumed lost and dead, but Malaysian Airline may have selected one of the worst and most insensitive means possible:
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razar said Monday that a new analysis of electronic data shows that the flight of Malaysia airliner with 239 people aboard “ended” in a remote area of the Indian ocean and indicated there were no survivors.
Just before the prime minister spoke, Malaysian Airlines sent a brief text message to family members of the passengers saying, “(w)e have to assume beyond any reasonable doubt that MH370 has been lost and that none of those on board survived.”
If they were going to use an impersonal method, they should have let the Prime Minister’s press conference do the job. I think a phone call from the airline would have been less bad but getting a text makes it look as if they were unwilling to listen to bereaved family members and provide direct comfort.
As I said at the beginning of the post, there is no good way to convey such horrible news even if it merely confirms what has been apparent for quite some time. At least they didn’t tweet it, but it’s remarkable that a national airline didn’t retain a PR crisis specialist to help them navigate this highly sensitive matter. If they did, they had no clue as to what the hell they were doing.
Anyone have any thoughts as to how the notification should have been handled?