Stupid Girl Loses Her Job Because of Facebook Status

by Rich DeMatteo on June 1, 2010 · 1 comment

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Some people are stupid.  You know this, right?  I mean, all of us can think of a handful of dumb people in our lives.  So, this post isn’t a lecture.  It’s not a “don’t do this”, warning post.   What we have here today is simply you, me, and countless others laughing at someone’s stupid use of social media.

I’ve been finding myself on lamebook.com often these days, and sometime last week I came across this excruciatingly beautiful Facebook failure.  Check out the image below… I’ll dig into poor Lindsay under the picture…


Poor stupid Lindsay, you’ve given me so much material to play with here.  I don’t even know where or how to begin, in fact I’m kind of disappointed in myself (sigh).  When all else fails, I turn to lists.  Here is the “Dumb Things That Lindsay Did” list.

  • Dumb #1 – “OMG I HATE MY JOB!!”    You never know who’s watching, so  say only good things about your job on social media.
  • Dumb #2 – Attacking anyone through social media is dumb.
  • Dumb #3 – Attacking your boss through social media is dumber.
  • Dumb #4 – Forgetting your boss is a friend on Facebook and then doing Dumb #1 and Dumb #3 is the dumbest.

I’m not all up to date on the latest Facebook privacy bullshit I keep hearing about, but it seems intense.  If anyone wants to fill me in, that would be super.  In the mean time, I think we all know to stay clear from just about everything Lindsay has done.

What are your thoughts on Lindsay?  Have you seen anyone else perform a similar act?   Seriously, what’s going on with privacy on Facebook?

Pretend you’re the employer.  How do you handle this situation?  Do you override the decision to fire Lindsay?  What about the manager?  What do you do?

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47 comments
Joe Dirt
Joe Dirt

First off I dont think anyone should lose there job from venting. Thats just saying that we dont have freedom of speech like we are suppose to. Just because we say we hate our jobs doesnt mean that we dont want to be there. Some of us have to work for a living just keep our house and to take care of our families. Not everyone is rich in this world and can sit on our asses all day and all night long. As far as the boss goes I do not believe that he should have embaressed her like that online. A boss should not swear at any employee I dont care what anyone says. If he wanted to fire her, which I dont think he had the right too, but he should have not done it on facebook where everyone could see that was just plain right dirty. So I would have to say im with the girl on this one. Hold your head up high and just worry about getting a new job and now you know you cant trust your boss.

Sunny Jo Gardner
Sunny Jo Gardner

Wow! If that doesn't beat all. I don't know what I'm more surprised about. The fact that she would "friend" her boss and then bad mouth her job, or that her boss would stoop so low as to publicly berate her. I have managed teams of people and I am not one for grand standing. I've always told my staff, if you have something to say to or about me, then you tell me in private, not in front of other staff or customers. In this case, depending on her privacy setting (which obviously didn't disclude her boss) she may have just been letting off steam to friends, friends of friends, or everyone (which is the default setting). In any case... if the boss wanted to show her that he was aware of her public lashing, he should have kept his message short and sweet and said something perhaps like "we can discuss your job duties in person". The profanity only makes you lose respect for him and diminishes his authority to the other employees. His grand standing technique is not for me. I've worked for someone like that and I don't find it an appealing quality in a manager. They are usually seeking some attention at your expense and it's wrong no matter how you look at it, and no matter who is in the wrong. ALL communication regarding your job should be dealt with in private, not in a public forum. Just my 2 cents :)

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Sunny - Not sure why, but I never saw this come through! The whole thing is crazy, isn't it? I'm not sure what bothers me more. Her, or her boss venting. Both of them should have been more mature.

Katie
Katie

I witnessed a situation like this go down at one of my jobs. Yes, people - your employers and co-workers all look you up online. All of them. If there's something about yourself you don't want someone, someday to know about you, then the interwebs is not the place for it. Keep it to your diary under your bed.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Katie - Yep, you've seen it happen. You've witnessed it, yet still many people don't get it. I feel like all of us in social media know how to use social media, but the folks that casually use social media are the ones in trouble. Maybe I'll wrote a post about that. Under the bed it shall go!

AngelaReitan
AngelaReitan

While I agree with you as a general rule of thumb, we have an anti-retaliation rule at my job that prohibits you from suffering as a result of any complaint against your employer, even if it is electronic.  I think she had the right to vent.  Did not necessarily  find the proper venue for it, but should not have lost her job.  That only goes to show how unprepared one is for management and (un)constructive criticism.

 

Brock Isham
Brock Isham

This story has been floating around for a good three or four years now. I'm just surprised how often this story keeps popping up. And FYI, it is authentic and good lesson in using discretion and plain common sense when posting online.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Brock - Yeah, it appears stories like this have been hot for a while not, and even this picture has been around for a bit. I agree with your point, and thanks for the comment!

Kyle Lacy
Kyle Lacy

Well, she obviously didn't like her job very much. Who knows maybe she did that on purpose :) I think its funny that she A. posted that B. got fired on FB for everyone to read... Hopefully, a lesson was learned.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Kyle - Yeah, it was pretty damn evident she hated her gig. I didn't think of that, maybe it was done on purpose? I hope you're right, but some folks never learn. Ehh, you know what? I hope she didn't learn, it's much more fun for all of us. Thanks for the comment!

Steve
Steve

This girl's boss responded in a way that highlights one other important thing to note: Stupidity is highly contagious.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Good call Steve - I agree. Maybe they deserve each other?

Greg Lauver
Greg Lauver

Rich - re Facebook privacy stuff, it's sort of self explanatory; but there are a few how-to articles on Lifehacker about it and its recent changes. Go to http://lifehacker.com/, type "facebook +privacy" (sans quotes) in to the top search bar, and hit enter.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Greg - Thanks. I remember the old privacy settings, but all of a sudden I started seeing things pop up everywhere regarding the new settings and people hating on zuckerberg, so I figured that something had changed dramatically. Thanks for the resources!

Keith Privette
Keith Privette

How about when somone you work posts something about you without your name, it is based on something you did at work and it was rather uppity that you know they wouldn't say to your face? If playing by the corp rules she created a hostile work environment....playing by my rules I can take it, but she should seriously should read this! Oh and companies don't make policies to fix stupid, you make things harder for yourself!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Keith - I think all work stories should be kept off, even without names. People find things, and it gets back to people. Maybe someone will pass this story on to her... Thanks for the comment!

Nat Berman
Nat Berman

I can't believe how little sympathy I have for these people. Honestly anyone with half a brain should know that anything, and I mean anything career related should not and never should be put on a social networking profile unless that profile has ZERO holes in it (and in this day and age that's nearly impossible). For the love of God people. The internet ain't so private anymore so please be careful otherwise you'll get exactly what you deserve.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Nat - I agree... unless it's a career related site like Linkedin, or a special app for Facebook, then maybe keep all things off. It can ruin you quickly. Thanks for your comment.

Rick
Rick

Yes, what she wrote was pretty dumb, but I commend those who called out the boss for responding in an unprofessional manner. As unnerving as it may have been to read about himself, the better course of (re)action would have been to call her into a private meeting, express his outrage - without resorting to profanity - and then firing her.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Rick - Spot on comment. I agree, and it looks like everyone here does as well. He's in danger as well in this situation. He may have certainly come into work the next day and found himself in a private meeting being fired. Who knows?

Rachel Vincent
Rachel Vincent

I totally agree. Without a doubt she was incredibly foolish, but is is appropriate to fire someone through their facebook page with a comment? I don't think so. I think an interesting question is: can info shared on social media be enough to fire someone. If I'm at a restaurant and I'm talking to friends about frustrations at work and my boss overhears, should I get fired? Yes, this situation is different because her boss in a friend on facebook, but putting that aside is the social media medium of sharing information with friends different from sharing through a face to face talk or phone conversation different enough? I don't have an easy answer. I go back and forth. But I do think it is something to consider.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Rachel - Definitely not OK to fire someone through Facebook. Maybe one day, companies will fire through social media, especially since now many to hire through SM. I think it depends what you are saying at the restaurant you work at. If you say, "my boss is a pervy wanker and I hate my job", then yes, I think that should be deemed something that's warrants being terminated. Each situation is different of course, and each company will look at things different. Any time you say you hate your job it's a cause for concern. Some companies will talk to that employee to see how they can make the job better, or maybe look for different position for that person, but that will only happen if that employee is a solid performer. It appears Lindsay wasn't able to handle simple tasks, so this guy had more than one reason to fire her. But again, Facebook wasn't the best place to fire her, just the most entertaining for all of us.

Veronica Ludwig
Veronica Ludwig

Fake or real, this post just cracked me up. ...probably because I know there are plenty of people out there that have done this.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Veronica - Glad this little diddy could provide some afternoon giggles.

Michelle Barbeau
Michelle Barbeau

Yes. Could be fake. But I think Asaad made a great point. Even if you aren't necessarily complaining about your job, keep it professional! Or don't add your professional contacts.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hi MIchelle - If this is fake, you'll have to see the others on lamebook, some are ridiculous, but hilarious. I have a feeling this is real. I think as a general rule, people just shouldn't talk about work stuff on Facebook. Maybe "Going in early today" is one thing, but anything regarding your likes and dislikes of a job, or confidential information (obviously) just should stay offline completely.

Rob
Rob

This image has been floating around the internet for quite a while now. I'm not convinced that it's authentic... Although it does get the point across.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Rob - who knows if it's authentic or not, but I'm pretty sure there are tons of people who have done this, and many that go way beyond what Lindsay said. Regardless, it happens, and this is certainly something that people should pay attention to. Thanks for the comment

Bridget Forney
Bridget Forney

Well, what if he was a wanker, though? Then the post doesn't seem all that unwarranted. Also, seems it would have been better to have a "What would you do?" post. Pose the question to your readers - if they're employers, how would they handle a situation like that? Not everyone has the guts to publicly respond, I'm sure. b

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Oh Bridget, you really would ask the question, "What if he was a wanker?". If we are going to get technical here, if he really was, he'd have tons of other problems on his hands... one being a hostile work environment sexual harassment claim. Besides her calling her boss a "wanker", she says she "hates her job". As an employer, you'd have two problems. 1. Someone that hates their job, and 2. A manager that may have issues as well. You pose a great question (stop with the great ideas) and I think I'll add that into the post at the end...

Keith McIlvaine
Keith McIlvaine

All the comments are spot on so far, terrible decision by Lindsay but equally terrible decision by her boss, Brian. This speaks to exactly why companies need a social media policy (but that is a much larger topic for another day!). Sweet find Rich, what a case study you uncovered for future conferences/un-conferences!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hiya Keith - Woah, good idea about using this as a case study for future! This certainly does speak to a larger topic, one that I'm sure crosses your mind daily. Lunch soon?

Mike Urbonas
Mike Urbonas

Hi Rich, Nice post. I'd add Dumb #5: Boss stoops to the same level as vulgar employee who publicly whines on Facebook, and responds in kind. I recall reading this not too long ago and thinking maybe they deserved one another. Mike

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hi Mike - No time no talk! Maybe they do deserve each other, who knows? Maybe they'll meet again in Job Heaven (or hell)?

Asaad Faquir
Asaad Faquir

Rich, I have a friend who falls in this category... She has applied for at least three promotions at the financial institution where she works and has worked for a number of years. They typically supply lame excuses as to why they pass her over in the promotion process like... "we think you would be bored" or "the activity at the location you applied to isn't as fast paced as your used to." Now while I have no way of knowing if these responses are true, they sound to lame. My personal feeling is that it has a lot more to do with status updates like "can't wait to get out of work to go drink with person x" or "so hungover and I have to be at work in an hour". And yes some of her bosses and almost all of her colleagues are FB friends with her. Not only can FB get you fired if used poorly it can prevent growth too! FB is like the chlorine bleach of the job hunt. It can make shine bright, but it can also ruin the load!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Asaad, Sounds like you should mentor this person a bit and have a sit down talk. Explain why her status isn't helping, and see if she'll listen to you. If not, send her this post, or some others. I bet there are tons of other stories like this you can find to prove your point.

Ashlee
Ashlee

It amazes me how foolish people can be. With all of the news stories and chatter surrounding Facebook privacy, you would think people would be cautious about what they post online.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Ashlee - You'd think, right? And, seriously, fill me in on this facebook mumbo jumbo bumbo. I have zero idea of what's going on. I don't have information on facebook that others shouldn't know, so I'm OK with folks going in and checking me out. That's kind of why I haven't looked into it yet, but please fill me in.

Mike
Mike

Unprofessional as it may have seemed, we can't argue that social norms have moved towards accepting social media as a valid way to release and receive information. If the Department of Defense uses Facebook and Twitter to distribute information, I have no doubt in my mind that businesses see this also. The only downfall might be a corporate branch that doesn't understand social media yet. And yes, the cursing was unnecessary. Also, capitalize "I" brother; if you're formally firing someone, at least make the text look good so you can show some sort of professionalism in case it becomes necessary.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Mike - Ok, good point, that is certainly where social media is going. I don't think anyone accepts the managers retaliation as a best practice. He certainly isn't someone I'd want on my team, but he sure did make for a funny facebook post!

Lindsey
Lindsey

What a moron. I must say though, her boss' response was professional right up until he used profanities. He had the upper hand before that. It's amazing how ignorant some people but people like that REALLY do exist. REALLY.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Hey Lindsey - Good point about her boss. Everything looked pretty great till the profanity. He still wins though, unless he got canned. Then he loses as well.

Jessica
Jessica

Yikes, that was a SERIOUSLY dumb move. She probably deserved to lose her job anyway, but I'm kind of surprised by the bosses reaction. That wasn't very professional either. He definitely has the right to be mad and to fire her, but the way he responded kind of put him on her level.

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Yes, the entertainment factor is pretty huge.... Dumb guy, but hilarious. High five for you Marian!

Rich DeMatteo
Rich DeMatteo

Jessica - I was going to write a bit about the boss, but I wanted to focus on her. I agree. Pretty low on his part. He probably should have waited till she came in and had the meeting with her. Don't think the company would be happy about his reaction. Thanks for the comment.

Marian Schembari
Marian Schembari

I actually give some serious props to the boss. I want to give him a high-five.

concerned for all
concerned for all

@Rich DeMatteo  follow the piper if you will - please understand this - THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS INTERNET PRIVACY -  believe it !

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