A Texas casino cruise ship exec has made a great show of furiously backpedaling after a Facebook post went viral for all the wrong reasons.
Earlier this month, the new Jacks or Better Casino cruise ship sailing out of Galveston was forced to cut short one of its twice-daily trips to international waters where gambling is legal after the ship struck a buoy in the dark in Galveston Bay. The impact tore a gash in the ship’s hull but no one was hurt and all passengers were safely returned to shore.
The ship plans to resume its regular sailing schedule on Friday (28) but in the meantime, someone connected with the casino operators posted a query to the ship’s official Facebook page asking followers if Captain David Kendrick should lose his job as a result of the collision.
The since-deleted “Hire or Fire?” post was instantly met with a flood of vitriol from users outraged that the company appeared to be keelhauling their skipper without cause. Company general manager Rocky Herrin posted a followup notice claiming that company staff had received “telephonic hate threats” and that “dog poop was actually thrown on the GM’s front door.”
Herrin also claimed that the original post was created “with Captain Dave’s approval.” Kendrick was said to be in “complete support” of what Herrin claimed was a sincere attempt to determine if there was “as we already believed, an affirmation of overwhelming support [Kendrick] received in prior posts.”
As might be expected for someone with poop on his door, Herrin remained a little miffed by the reaction to the post, and while the company offered a “sincere apology,” it stressed that the apology was “not for content, but for verbiage.”
Herrin subsequently told local CBS affiliate KHOU that the original post “wasn’t designed to put the captain out there to dry.” Herrin said the company was just trying to determine “if everyone felt safe with [Kendrick] behind the helm.”
Naturally, the whole brouhaha bears the unmistakable odor of a publicity stunt intended to use the enforced downtime to drum up business once anchors are aweigh. Can’t wait until a drunken passenger slips on an ice cube, falls overboard and gets eaten by a shark, after which social media followers will be asked whether Isaac the Bartender has bitten off more than he or she can chew.