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A Brief History of People Getting Fired for Social Media Stupidity

Originally posted on Rolling Stone

Not a day goes by, it seems, without a new story of someone posting an unbelievably tasteless, offensive, stupid, racist, homophobic, sexist or otherwise inappropriate thing on social media. Bigotry expressed in private is inexcusable, but bigotry voluntarily scribbled upon the un-erasable blackboard that is the Internet is a new kind of unbelievable. It boggles the mind that people will actually document and broadcast their terrible ideas online – especially given the documented and broadcast history of people getting fired over similar behavior. And yet, they do.

Just this month, we’ve gotten fresh examples of the genre from Paula Deen, who apparently likes ethnic drag as much as she likes cooking with butter; and from the British bankers who thought it would be fun to playact an ISIS beheading . Here’s a look back at those and some of the other most ridiculous and terrible things people have posted to their Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts before losing their jobs as a result. We apologize in advance to anyone whose idiocy and/or bigotry didn’t make the cut, but if we listed everyone we’d be here all month.

Just last week, six HSBC bankers in Birmingham, England, were fired over re-enacting (and recording, and posting on Instagram) a mock ISIS beheading. One of the bank employees – the one who nabbed the coveted leading role of beheading victim – rocked an orange jumpsuit as he kneeled in front of his five colleagues, who did a lovely job as a supporting ensemble in black tracksuits and balaclavas. They were fired after the super-insensitive clip circulated online, of course. In their defense, the video was reportedly made during a work-sponsored team-building exercise, and you can only do so many trust falls before it becomes boring and, quite frankly, dangerous.

“Lucyyyyyyy! You got a lot of esplainin’ to do!” There’s nothing wrong with dressing up as characters from a... Source: Katie Halper


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