Madeleine Otto, a 99-year-old from Tequesta, Fla., still drives. She also pays off her Discover Card in full every month.
So when Otto was turned down for a department store credit card recently, she was understandably distraught. She was too old, the Stein Mart cashier told her after the computer spit out her rejection, according to the Palm Beach Post. The cashier apologized and hugged Otto, who then went to her car and cried, reports ABC News.
Otto was reportedly buying shoes for her 100th birthday celebration on Oct. 18, and it was the store that offered her the credit application so she could receive a $10 discount on the purchase. Her spry bearing and clean financial past only increased her frustration. "I'm not like an ordinary 100 year old," she told ABC News.
In February 2010, a new credit card law went into effect with tougher age minimums: No one under 21 can get a credit card without a cosigner or proof of sufficient income, U.S. News & World Report wrote. But there was nothing about age maximums, even for near-centenarians like Otto.
But what seemed to be an infuriating case of age discrimination against Otto turned out to be more of an age-of-technology problem. The input data entry allowed Otto to enter only the last two digits of her birth year, the Palm Beach Post discovered in checking with the store. So the credit system read her birthdate as Oct. 18, 2012, which meant she wouldn't have been born yet. Of course the computer issued a NO. The store apologized and sent her a $50 gift certificate for her trouble, KMBZ.com wrote.
It might be a good idea for credit-check gizmos to avoid future senior moments because credit companies will miss out on a lot of customers. According to The Centenarian online magazine, nearly 1 million people age 100 and older will be living in the United States by 2050.
Turn Your Car Into A Negative Ad
A <a href="http://www.reddit.com/r/pics/comments/xqc6h/i_love_it_when_people_take_shit_into_their_own/" target="_hplink">Reddit user</a> launched a negative ad campaign on his car after he claimed a car dealership <a href="http://now.msn.com/vehicle-has-signs-on-it-claiming-car-dealer-that-sold-it-is-a-liar" target="_hplink">bilked him</a> out of $9,000.
Jump Out Of A Moving Plane
An Air Asia passenger caused quite a panic after he <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/08/06/air-asia-passenger-causes-panic-leaps-from-plane_n_1746430.html" target="_hplink">opened an emergency exit and jumped out of a taxiing aircraft</a>. According to reports, the flight had been delayed an hour when the passenger, only identified as Chong, bolted toward the exit. Subsequently, the flight was delayed along with other outgoing flights.
Cause A Social Media Stir
When Netflix tried to instill its second price hike in 8 months, angry customers <a href="https://www.facebook.com/netflix/posts/10150234431168870" target="_hplink">flocked to social media</a> to unleash their fury over the pricing plan changes. The company didn't revoke the price hike, and more than <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/12/22/netflix-price-hike_n_1166148.html" target="_hplink">800,000 Netflix customers jumped ship</a> as a result.
Foreclose On A Bank
Warren Nyerges and his attorney <a href="http://moneyland.time.com/2011/06/06/homeowner-forecloses-on-bank-of-america-yes-you-heard-that-right/" target="_hplink">served a local Bank of America branch with a foreclosure order</a> for failing to pay Nyerges' legal fees after a botched foreclosure proceeding. Eventually, the bank wrote a check for $5,772.88 to satisfy Nyerges' request.
Do Your Research
Dick Bove, a well-known bank analyst, <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/26/dick-bove-wells-fargo_n_1703840.html" target="_hplink">blasted Wells Fargo</a> in a <a href="http://dealbreaker.com/uploads/2012/07/WFC072312-Service.pdf" target="_hplink">well-researched analyst note</a> after the bank botched his personal account with extra fees, screwed up his mortgage refinancing and gave him horrible customer service.
Take It To The Press
Taylor McKinley <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/23/bank-fee-fifth-third-bank_n_1297200.html" target="_hplink">told The Huffington Post</a> his tale of bank account he thought was was closed that ended up racking up $438.35 in fees. After HuffPost contacted Fifth Third Bank to verify the bank's policies, it reversed the fees it had charged McKinley.
Create A Change.org Petition
A disgruntled T-Mobile customer <a href="http://www.change.org/petitions/t-mobile-make-t-mobile-stop-their-bad-customer-service" target="_hplink">created a petition</a> on Change.org to protest the company's "bad customer service."
We're not sure <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JBd0shBeMck&feature=player_detailpage" target="_hplink">what this dealership did</a> to make this customer so angry, but they are surely paying for it.
Commit Insurance Fraud
According to a study by Accenture, 55 percent of consumers say bad service from an insurance company is more likely to make them <a href="http://bucks.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/10/25/getting-revenge-against-your-insurance-company/" target="_hplink">commit fraud against the company</a>.
Create A Viral YouTube Video
While traveling with his band members in 2008, Dave Carroll witnessed United Airlines baggage handlers throwing his $3,500 Taylor guitar. The guitar ended up severely damaged, and Carroll pursued the airline for payment, which he was denied. As a result, Carroll wrote and produced three <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5YGc4zOqozo" target="_hplink">YouTube music videos</a> about his poor experience that have netted over 14 million views. Carroll has since also <a href="http://www.davecarrollmusic.com/book/" target="_hplink">written a book</a>, embarked on a <a href="http://bigbreaksolutions.com/events/?utm_source=UnitedBreaksGuitarscom" target="_hplink">speaking tour</a> and created his own <a href="http://gripevine.com/" target="_hplink">customer gripe site</a>.