If you've ever worked in customer service or retail, or had a terrible manager, the phrase "bad compliance" will be a melody to your ears. We've all had heads telling us to do something really stupid. Sometimes that's all they tell us. And so at some point, we all followed it (or at least I know I did) literally, simply out of the purest of malice, just to show how foolish they were.
This is known as malicious compliance, and it follows a terrible thing just to show how ridiculous it is. It's a wonderful and delicious combination of passive aggression and real courage that allows an employee to make his little boss (or run horribly on him) eat his words. Fortunately, there is a sub-forum known simply as r/MaliciousCompliance, where thousands of users from years ago have shared their best stories of this satisfying work.
Pulled straight from Reddit, here are ten of the sweetest, most satisfying and satisfying stories about malicious compliance.
10 "We just follow the rules"
Tesla offers to become an electricity supplier in Texas
The homeowner's association responsible for user memon17's neighborhood has made a call. They decided that all the BLM flags, the thin blue line, etc. were too many. From now on, it was the flags of the United States or nothing. The user's house had been flying a small pride flag for years and so decided to leave it. Until, that is, someone reported it.
The user writes that he "complied and removed the flag" but decided to consider more HOA rules than just those. They write, "Due to our new rules, we noticed that removable lamps are allowed without restrictions, so ... we bought 6 colorful flashlights, and washed our house in luxurious colors." The house has become a giant, bright sign of pride or, as the user writes, "less accurate than our simple flag."
9 "To Mark Their Ownership Line"
User BalloonUnderstudy was living in a house with only a narrow strip of yard between the house and their neighbor's house. The user's parents used half of the side yard to create an expensive garden, partly to hide the interior of their kitchen from view and partly to enjoy the plants.
They woke up one morning to find the whole garden cut up. Their neighbors "told my father that the plants were on his property line, so he had the full right to remove them." The plants were replanted. Once again, they were cut off. The user writes that “After a conversation with my neighbor he decided to contact a professional and determine his ownership line. My father agreed.”
The professional did his job on a T, which happened to have been removed 11 feet from the neighbor's property. The property line was already wrong, not as the neighbor had hoped. "We watched him come down the fence, completely angry. Within the next month we were enjoying our new space and our privacy in the backyard, and ended up losing my neighbor 1/4 of his backyard. My neighbor ended up paying nearly $10,000 to destroy our property, And we got to plant our plants again.”
8 "A pound of wings? Well, you got it"
User proatus_ebrius_est writes about a special moment in his past life as a cook in a nightclub with a reduced suite. That night every week, the restaurant offered a pound of wings for dirt cheap. Of course, they didn't actually weigh the wings, they only sent eight of them. They thought this should be about a pound. Until one night a guest complained.
The guest complained that it "was 'obvious' that he did not gain a pound, for it would be a great coincidence that each person's pounds would produce the same number of wings on each plate." “Weigh these wings (which are already lowered) to make sure he gets what he paid for,” the guest said to the servant. The server has already weighed them. They were a pound and a half. So the servant put them back and said, with probably wicked glee, "Here are your wings, sir. You were right, there was more than one pound. So we kicked the others out. Good hold."
7 "The Last Five Pictures"
User stuufthingsandstuff had a friend named Steve. The pair worked together in a high-end electronics manufacturing company, a place with microchips and valuable data, thus also boosting security. But for Steve, it was way too loud. The security guard guarding the entrance to the facility was overly suspicious of Steve for some reason, and every day "asked Steve to show him the last 5 photos taken on his phone" to prove he wasn't stealing secrets."
One day, Steve decides to sneak into the bathroom and take revenge. When asked to hand his phone back that day, “Steve gladly hands the phone. (Security guard) was greeted by some shots at a very strange angle to Steve…” (I will finish the statement) Naked behind him. He never asked to see Steve's phone again.
6 "No, I'm checking your heart"
Emergency medical responders are overworked, underpaid and absolutely vital to society, so it's a good idea not to waste their time. But that's what happened to a JaeCryme user when he responded to a "chest pain" call in an affluent neighborhood.
They arrived to find a woman waiting for them on the sidewalk with bags. Paramedics tried to run tests and check her vitals, but she refused. She told them she "doesn't really have chest pain, has a specific procedure in the hospital, and wants me to turn off the bright lights so her neighbors won't notice her and ask her questions."
The user tried to rate her again, but she refused again, adding that her appointment was in less than 30 minutes, which meant they had to hurry to give her the free ride they had. The user was very professional and shut it down, writing, "I ask her frankly: Do we need medical attention or do we need the police? She proceeded to do a full job, in front of her house, and took my sweet time, asking enough questions to make her eyes roll, leaving strong lights on all the time until he saw Neighbors. And she was late because we got her to the hospital through the emergency room instead of the front doors.”
5 "My Manager Likes To Call Me"
The inquisitive user manager now used to call her every day around 6:15 a.m., they put it, "ask me if I'd like to fill in the shifts of people who have just come in contact with the disease." Anyone who has worked in food service and entertainment knows that management "requests" like these are surprisingly normal.
The user got tired, so he took the initiative to “volunteer at 3:30 in the morning to call this same manager to ask if they needed extra help. He became very angry and tried to write me that.” So the user told the top administrators what happened: "I showed the GM the timestamps of the calls I received." They concluded, simply, "I'm not getting calls anymore."
4 "Overcoming Noise Complaints"
User wibbley_wobbley tells the short but satisfying tale of his local bar that wraps around zoning rules for live music. The bar routinely hosts live music, as many good pubs should. But after a noise complaint from a neighbor, authorities informed the pub that zoning rules prevented them from hosting live music. The owners of the pub decided to check out the rule themselves and discovered that it only forbids live music inside. They moved the concerts outside "to the yard section, where it will be louder for the neighbours, and it will still be legal."
3 "Reclining Seat"
Take it from me - tall people can have a tough time on planes. Anyone 6'2″ and up will be cramped and will likely have to bend their knees at awkward angles just to fit in. User Earth Shaker 495 It was even worse: He had someone in front of him demanding that he be taller… less height. In flight, the man in front of the user repeatedly hit his seat on the user's legs. “I tell him to stop please, and he says, 'I'll stop when I can get my seat back.' After repeated blows, the man in front eventually demanded a new seat, then asked to speak to the pilot.
The co-pilot arrived and said, “Looking at the man,” Sir, would you like to sit in business class? The man agreed, glad he finally got what he wanted. Then the co-pilot adds, 'Sir, sit down.' I wasn't talking to you. The co-pilot turns to the tall user and asks, 'How would you like to get a seat in business class? The user writes, "I've never, to this day, seen someone as angry as the guy I passed to my new seat in business class (with free drinks)."
2 "Shut the door if we're five minutes late? Yes!"
Some professors are unnecessarily strict, and user Khromez found himself stuck with one of them for a semester. “The professor physically locks the door once 5 minutes have passed (after class starts), and will not open it again for any reason. If you are 5 minutes late, you have missed that lesson.”
But one day, the students all got revenge. “The same professor arrived five minutes late that day, and the students locked him out of class. For an entire hour… Needless to say, he never locked the doors again.”
1 "Nathan vs. the IRS"
The IRS is a very popular bogeyman and it's hard to argue against it. But Reddit user fox-mcleod shared the story of his friend Nathan turning the tables on the IRS in an incredibly satisfying way. Like very satisfactory.
Long story short: Nathan's parents mistakenly paid his taxes for one year when he had already paid them himself. So Nathan canceled one of the checks, eliminating the $40 check fee. Nathan, who "just works systems through problems no matter how hard they appear" was not struggling with that.
Nathan spent the "next four weeks escalating the problem to the point where he got a case officer - a real real human agent on the phone," reaching out to several agents afterward, and obtaining all of their addresses. Nathan asked an agent, "I can (Nathan) write a check for $10 and indicate it's for you (Mr. 'Agent' at 1234567 Schenectady, NY) and cancel it resulting in a $40 fee being paid to you with no penalty or remedy whatsoever to me. ?" The agent said yes. As the user writes, "That's what Nathan did...He followed through by...sending checks to the IRS destined to pay the agent(s) taxes...so Nathan could cancel them, causing the agent(s) to be He owes the IRS a “fee for each canceled check.”
The IRS quickly wrote: "Sir, we understand the point you made. Please consider your fee waived and I hope we can put this behind us."