Uncarrier CEO John Legere was Uninvited from AT&T’s big CES 2014 bash for developers on Monday when staff running the event threw him out after he crashed the party. Legere, who is known for publicly taunting AT&T on Twitter, on stage at events and when any other opportunities arise, says he attended AT&T’s CES party on Monday night only because he wanted to see the headlining act, Macklemore, perform. When people began to tweet pictures of themselves with Legere at the party, however, the event staff was made aware of his presence and they approached him.
“All of a sudden these gigantic goons said ‘Can I talk to you over here,’ ” Legere told Re/code in a brief interview following the incident. The T-Mobile executive said he was told that if he didn’t depart the party immediately, he would be charged with trespassing.
Legere was then escorted out of the event by security staff. The incident took place while AT&T Mobility boss Ralph de la Vega was on stage discussing the carrier’s new deal with former T-Mobile partner Audi.
It’s no mystery that T-Mobile and its outspoken CEO have gotten under AT&T’s skin. Last week, AT&T announced a new promotion that offers subscribers up to $450 per line to switch service from T-Mobile to AT&T. The move is thought to be a preemptive strike, as T-Mobile is rumored to be planning a similar offer as part of its “Uncarrier 4.0” initiative, which will be detailed during the carrier’s press conference at CES.
Legere’s response to the new AT&T promotion was just as feisty as expected. “#Randall – you gave us cash & spectrum AND we took your customers with #Uncarrier moves, do you really think you can buy them back?” Legere tweeted last week following the announcement, speaking directly to AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson.
Updated to clarify timing and purpose of AT&T’s party.