update: my new employee keeps tagging us in negative social media posts after we’ve told her to stop

It’s a special “where are you now?” season at Ask a Manager, when I’m running updates from people who had their letters here answered in the past.

Remember the letter-writer whose new employee kept tagging the company and coworkers in negative social media posts even after they told her to stop? Here’s the (amazing) update.

I have a quick, hilarious update for you.

I checked in with my boss and HR about our 30 day review and my instinct to let her go. I was told because of the pandemic and people being stressed out to give her a final warning one more time and let her know we were extending her probation. I get where they were coming from and it’s why I enjoy working with them – they try to be understanding and lead with kindness when someone makes poor choices. The staff member, myself, and my boss met with her via a video conferencing app. Little did I know she was live-streaming her freaking 30 day review. (She legitimately had a screen share app up and was running it on Facebook Live.) There was nothing else I could do then and now but laugh.

We ended the call when we found out about 10 minutes in and wrote up formal termination paperwork that we mailed to her, wishing her well. The team was great about picking up slack and dividing her tasks and projects. We found a contractor for overflow. She emailed me this morning for a reference, which I forwarded to HR.

That’s one for the WTF books.

I am so baffled by this so I asked the letter-writer if she had a theory about what this was all about. Her answer:

We think she’s aiming to be an influencer of some kind. Based on all social media she has (Facebook, tiktok, Instagram, a YouTube channel, Twitter, some multiple accounts) it looks like that’s what she’s aiming for. Good luck to her!

{ 316 comments… read them below }

    1. Hills to Die on*

      Indeed! Thwarting the aspirations of an influencer! OP must forward Alison her info so that Alison can tag her straight away!

      1. selena*

        I definitely want to see this bushfire
        (For 30 seconds at least, as with most influencers)

      2. AKchic*

        Oh. My. Gawds.

        Yes. It would be a travesty not to tag her, but at the same time, why give her any publicity?

        I am so torn!

    2. pleaset AKA cheap rolls*

      “Little did I know she was live-streaming her freaking 30 day review.”


      I hope she had it in one of those crazy looking Twitch backgrounds, etc.

      I tip my hat to her simply in her freakiness. That’s next-level s3it. That’s A-tier.

  1. another Hero*

    This is incredible. Thanks for sending the update, op, for I dearly love to laugh

    1. Thankful for AAM*

      But I cannot laugh at that.
      Well, I can but I suspect the social media influencer is not expecting us to see this as funny.

  2. bennie*

    please make sure this ends up on some kind of year end WTF posts lists, it’s truly a story for the AAM history books

      1. Meredith*

        Oh I loved Michelle. And at least she was good at her job. I’d 110% rather work with Michelle than the social media influence. Although I’d love to work with the OP with the spicy food. I grow carolina reapers in my yard, so perhaps we could swap recipes.

  3. Ray Gillette*

    Thank you OP for updating us all and thank you Alison for running this. I just had a rather rough start to the week and this was exactly the soothing balm I needed.

    1. Where’s the Orchestra?*

      Agreed, sounds like OP’s bosses are great at supporting their people. It sounds like this was a really full blown case of somebody who was just determined not to follow directions because “I know better.”

      1. ellex42*

        I think it’s more a matter of “I have a completely different agenda regarding my job than the agenda my employer expects me to have.” Which is even more WTF than usual.

        1. Mints*

          I think she suspected she was going to get fired or at least a “talking to” and thought she could spin it for viral gold. Assuming she’s not actually that oblivious, which is always a possibility

          1. Where’s the Orchestra?*

            I kinda lean towards the oblivious to the fact that consequences are real. We’ve seen many letters they the years from people that were schooled that warned consequences were enforced upon them. Denial isn’t just a river in Egypt.

          2. usernamesallused*

            I’ll be honest – I would love to see someone live streaming their getting fired for live streaming their review.

      2. selena*

        Indeed: sounds like bosses really did all that can be expected of a good employer. Both in giving influencer-girl a lot of second chances and in eventually firing her (instead of forcing her colleagues to keep working with her)

  4. Matilda Jefferies*

    She was…livestreaming…her performance review??

    You know, every time I think I’ve seen all the kinds of unusual workplace behaviour, someone like this comes along and resets the scale. That’s just so weird! But at least it removes any doubts about whether or not you should fire her. And it will give you a great party story for pretty much the rest of your life!

    1. WorkIsADarkComedy*

      There are epic levels of ego, entitlement and self-delusion going on here.

      I predict a career in politics.

      1. old curmudgeon*

        The terrifying thing about the part about going into politics is that it is probably entirely accurate.

      2. Seeking Second Childhood*

        I can just imagine the journalist who looks into that politician’s past. “This can’t be real, this is someone from the other party who’s good with Adobe MovieRemake…except wow it’s from 2020, that’s still early days of animation!”

      3. SusanIvanova*

        I predict a lifetime of asking for “donations” for “exposure” to her 100 Instagram followers.

      4. Vicky Austin*

        That’s what I was thinking, too. She’s one of those people who think that rules don’t apply to her for some reason, and that she’s allowed to get away with anything. I suspect that she’s never before had to face consequences for her actions.

        I wouldn’t be surprised if she runs for office, but I doubt she’ll win any election.

    2. eattherich*

      Can you imagine this person’s social media, too? What a strange channel/account they must have if everything is so personal like this. I can’t tell if it would be bizarrely entertaining or annoying to follow them.

  5. Detective Amy Santiago*

    I can’t decide if my favorite part is her live streaming her review or her having the audacity to ask for a reference.

    1. Double A*

      Couldn’t she just send a recording of her performance review as a reference? I mean… saves time for everyone.

        1. Salymander*

          Ha! Did the same with my coffee, and now have coffee everywhere. My cat just gave me a disgusted look. Pretty sure if she could she would have raised an eyebrow at me. My daughter didn’t even notice of course, as school is out and she has been pulled into a swirling vortex of anime and texting.

        2. Susan*

          Not over this, but one time, I was brushing my teeth, and was using my mouthwash, and, for whatever reason, instead of staying in my mouth to be spit out when I was done, the mouthwash decided to somehow migrate to my sinuses and just run out my nose. And I like a VERY minty, hot mouthwash. That hurt so bad, and I had quite a headache that day. Plus, I was on vacation at a beach, so LOTS of bright sunlight that day. I was a little subdued that day. It was not fun.

          1. allathian*

            Ouch. That was like the time I snorted coke out my nose (pun intended). I was drinking coke one day and suddenly had to sneeze. No time to swallow so I had coke running out my nose. Luckily I was able to rinse most of it out with a saline solution, so it didn’t hurt so much. Even saline nasal spray is better than nothing.

      1. Slow Gin Lizz*

        Same. I was going to comment “Wait, you fired her and she ASKED YOU FOR A REFERENCE????” Wut. I mean, WUT.

    2. ampersand*

      I know! She’s so clueless that it’s scary.

      I would provide a reference in this case, just to warn anyone off from hiring her.

    3. JSPA*

      I’m thinking the whole thing is performance art, from her POV. (Including the reference request.) Or she’s doing this as a D.I.Y. reality show (except without realizing she needs releases to do that).

      1. selena*

        My guess would be DIY-reality from someone who doesn’t understand selfpromotion is more important than content (lots of people live the life of a mental patient, the challenge is to get the audience invested in *your* zany antics)

    4. Half-Caf Latte*

      The live-streaming for sure. I’ve failed as student for plagiarism and been asked to be a reference, so that doesn’t surprise.

      1. selena*

        Any idea why they asked? Did they hope you forgot? Did they not have other references? Or did it just not occur to them that you’d be honest?

        1. Anonymous at a University*

          Not Half-Caf Latte, but when a student who had plagiarized asked me for a reference for graduate school and I said, “No, because I cannot ethically give one,” he e-mailed me back, “But all my other professors already said no.”

          1. Prof. Space Cadet*

            I’ve had failing student ask me for references several times in my career. My response is always, “um, what do you think I would have to say about you?”

    5. Director of Alpaca Exams*

      Asking for a reference is just icing on the audacity cake. Truly incredible.

  6. Susie Q*

    That is so insane.

    Even if she wanted to be an influencer, why would she want something that negative on the internet? That’s going to haunt her for the rest of her life.

    1. BadWolf*

      So her “theme” could be complete and total transparency on her “real” life? Otherwise, I don’t know.

    2. Dana Lynne*

      You know what Zsa Zsa said… There’s no such thing as bad publicity.

      (Of course that was before the internet.)

    3. RandomPoster*

      Not only negative but boring – you need engaging content for people to be interested in what you have to say, and a minute by minute run through of your day in an office is…not interesting.

      1. SarahKay*

        Although, I’d consider watching that live-streamed performance review just for the sheer “Wow! who does that?!?” aspect of it.

      2. Beth Jacobs*

        Yup. I work an office job all day, it’s not something I want to do in my off hours. (Although, here I am, commenting on AAM… maybe Alison could make a TV show based on the site :D)

      3. selena*

        To be fair: her behavior is a lot less boring than what i see at my job. Not really engaging though: this levels of openness is kinda cool for the novelty-factor, but that’s all.

    4. fposte*

      Yes, she basically livestreamed her justified firing. The actual words of termination aren’t on screen but anybody who can put 2+2 together will see what happened.

      1. A volunteer*

        If the state Unemployment Commission gets involved, there will probably be little problem for your company and no charge for benefits once you provide the details of her termination. If ever there was a termination for cause, this is it. The budding social influencer will learn the meaning of the words”gross misconduct”t

        Your company might want to look into preventing her from using her employment in any way shape, or form on social media and have her delete anything she posted previously. A strongly worded cease and desist letter with the promise of legal action if she fails to do so should do the trick.

        1. Susan*

          Except she would probably post a pic of the cease and desist letter on social media; she does not seem to grasp the concept of not posting EVERY LITTLE THING on social media.

          1. selena*

            Better to ignore her i think, as long as she isn’t creating too much fuss. Don’t want a Streisand-effect.

    5. Hey Nonnie*

      I’m imagining a desire to be known for her biting topical commentary, sort of like a Stephen Colbert or Samantha Bee. Only she doesn’t really grasp the subtle difference between “witty and sharp” and “sad, pathetic complainer.” Or the difference between “topical” and “my personal life that no one besides me would find relevant or interesting.”

      I mean… I don’t think this is going to end well for her on either front.

    6. SheLooksFamiliar*

      I’m sure negative is in the eye of the beholder. She probably thought she was unjustly targeted and wanted the world to agree with her.

      1. fhqwhgads*

        Yeah it seems like she thought she’d catch them in some sort of “gotcha”; alas she was mistaken. So very very very very very very mistaken.

    7. Dimmie*

      My guess is because “epic fail” videos get a lot of hits. Many a wealthy youtuber today got their big break after accidentally (or maybe now days intentionally) capturing an “epic fail” while trying to make a different video and having the wherewithal to follow through on posting it even if it makes them look less then flattering. Enough people find that hilarious that the video could go viral.

      Why do you think there are so many videos of girls absolutely destroying their hair “by mistake” on YouTube?

      In a world of copycats you got to go the extra mile to get an original video.

      1. Keymaster of Gozer*

        ‘Company fires me for defending my free speech!! (Unedited) (real!!) (must watch!)’

        20 comments all saying ‘boring’

        1 upvote. 20 downvotes. Channel has no subscribers.

      2. Vicky Austin*

        “My guess is because “epic fail” videos get a lot of hits”

        Case in point: “Friday” by Rebecca Black, which became one of the most popular videos because everyone sent it to their friends saying, “You have to check this out because it’s so bad!”

    8. Lynn*

      Some people value attention — even negative attention — above anything else! Bizarre

    9. hbc*

      Okay, I’ll admit it: There’s a part of me that would want to watch a terrible employee flounce around waving the “look how my company did me wrong” banner while proving the problem is the employee. It’s the same part of me that likes terrible movies and emo teen poetry.

    10. Probably Taking This Too Seriously*

      Because “real talk, guys.” #IWokeUpThisWay #sponsored

      1. Sophie Hatter*

        “I’m going to get real with you all for a second,” she posts on her Instagram, after nothing but her boring, very real life for weeks

    11. ladycrim*

      Willing to bet she assumed she’d get positive feedback because she’s Super Awesome. Those warnings were just people being stuffy; who DOESN’T love being talked about on the internet? Surely they’ve come around by now!

    12. Vicky Austin*

      Because she’s so delusional that she doesn’t realize that it reflects badly on her.

  7. Blarg*

    How did you find out about the live stream? How many people were watching? And also, why?? So amazing. Nice work.

    1. Frank Doyle*

      I would like to know this too.

      And until the part where she got fired in the middle of it, that sounds like the most boring livestream ever. Who on earth would want to watch someone else’s performance review? Except that now, I kind of want to see it?

        1. The Starsong Princess*

          I don’t even want to watch my own performance review, forget someone else’s. Although the firing added some excitement.

      1. No Longer Working*

        She didn’t get fired in the middle of it. They were going to keep her on to be kind, despite her issues. They ended the review upon discovering the livestream, then fired her.

        1. Frank Doyle*

          Oh man, you’re right! Booooo to that. They should have done it on the livestream. These people just don’t know how to get views.

    2. Emma the Strange*

      I was wondering this too. My best guess is they wanted to show her examples of problematic posts during the meeting and so went to her Facebook page to get them during the meeting.

      1. Zombeyonce*

        I wouldn’t be surprised if she told them she was livestreaming just to get a reaction for that very livestream as it was happening. She has no concept of appropriate boundaries but at least she’ll get an idea of what consequences mean now. (Though I doubt it’ll stick.)

        1. Where’s the Orchestra?*

          Yeah – given that the original post referenced a “spotty work history” I wonder if she ever really fully internalizes consequences so that she is then able to apply them to other similar situations.

    3. Mack*

      Maybe another coworker happened to be looking at facebook on their phone and see the livestream going and alerted the manager? That is the only think I can think of. Just why??

      1. Ama*

        I haven’t had the Facebook app on my phone for a while, but I’m guessing it’s possible to set things up so you receive a notification if one of your friends is livestreaming, even if you aren’t actively in the app.

        1. selena*

          Maybe it was accompanied by a post that tagged the employer (‘my review at @company, live in 3 minutes’) and this flagged with the person in charge of said company-fb-page.

    4. JJ*

      100% chance the employee mentioned it herself, and/or shared her screen so they could see it. She clearly has always wanted them to know what she’s doing! (re: all the past tagging)

    5. Diahann Carroll*

      How many people were watching? And also, why??

      Right. I don’t even want to sit through my own review, let alone someone else’s.

      1. GammaGirl1908*

        Coming to say this exact thing. I don’t want to sit through my own boring work administrative meetings! Why would I watch someone else’s online?

        (I also don’t really like watching online videos / livestreams, because you can’t do anything else while watching them. I love podcasts because you can multitask while listening. I feel very trapped when having to drop everything to watch a video; I would rather read to get information, because that goes so much faster for me. I could read in 2 minutes what it takes a video 10 minutes to cover. And now you want me to DEDICATE AN HOUR to watching and listening to your MEDIOCRE PERFORMANCE REVIEW? Girl, bye.)

        1. selena*

          Reading tends to be so much faster than listening, especially in some meandering reality-show type video.

        2. Cheerfully Polite Grey Rock*

          I also have trouble sitting down and watching video of any length (including tv shows and movies), as reading is a lot faster and better retained for me too.
          But, I find it a lot easier if I am doing something physical that requires very little of my brain – knitting, cross stitch, washing dishes, pairing socks etc. something that you can look up from frequently and still listen to the video. Obviously this isn’t generally advisable if you also need to be on video, but I’ve found it very useful for webinars or other circumstances where audience participation (or cameras) are not required.

          1. allathian*

            Yeah. When I listen to webinars or especially watch recorded video, the only way I can focus on the content at all is to fiddle with my phone at the same time. Something idiotic like Candy Crush that doesn’t take much brainpower is perfect. Admittedly I also do it on Skype meetings, even on camera. I just keep my hands out of sight and look at the camera when I’m speaking. I won’t do it on 1:1 calls, though. I have a hard time focusing in live meetings too, but then I bring a paper notebook and pretend to take notes. In reality, I just doodle or attempt to draw caricatures of the speaker, but the optics are much better with the pen and paper.
            That said, our team meetings are fairly relaxed affairs, one coworker always knits when it’s not her turn to keep the minutes, and it’s never been an issue.
            But if I’m doing online courses, I always rate those highly where you get the written video script as well. If you can skip the video and just read the script, so much the better. Sometimes you can’t skip the video, and then it’s just time wasted because I want to read the script before I answer any questions. The last online course I did was supposed to take an hour, but I took half that because I’m a fast reader and I retain information that I read well. If I attempt to just focus on the video, my internal monolog takes over and I lose focus. That said, I do enjoy watching movies, TV shows and even documentaries, because they’re so immersive that I don’t lose focus. Especially if we’re watching on the 100 in projector in our movie room, it’s like going to the movies.
            The next time when someone recommends a podcast, maybe I’ll listen to it when I’m folding laundry, filling or emptying the dishwasher, pairing socks, etc.

    6. Mockingdragon*

      “She legitimately had a screen share app up and was running it on Facebook Live.” – I took this to mean that when she shared her screen, it showed the tab/window open that was running the livestream.

      1. Vichyssuave*

        I read it as the other way around – the screen share was being shown to her facebook viewers (all 2 of them I’d imagine) whereas the company just saw whatever video conferencing app they were using. Otherwise I doubt they would have only figured it out 10 minutes in.

    7. old person*

      Am I the only one here who just tried to find this on youtube? No success though.

  8. ENFP in Texas*

    I’m sure she somehow thinks all her tagging and posting is “worthy” of a reference because she is “bringing public awareness” of the company name to “all her followers”.

    ::insert eyeroll::

  9. Beth*

    Livestreaming her freaking EMPLOYEE REVIEW?!?!?!?!

    And then she asked for a reference?!?!?!?!?

    My gob is so smacked it cannot be more smacked than it is.

    1. Batty Twerp*

      Ditto. And yet, somehow, wow is not enough…

      I’ve not unscrambled my brain from the previous post and now all I have is grey matter pretzel!

  10. Ali G*

    How in the world would one think they could become an influencer by live streaming a negative performance review? What are you aiming to be? Who would aspire to that?
    That’s not how this works! That’s not how any of this works!

    1. Observer*

      She obviously wasn’t expecting it to be negative. And she still clearly doesn’t get it.

      1. fhqwhgads*

        I think it sounds like she was expecting it to be negative, but that she thought that it would be unfairly negative, so she streamed it so people could see “the truth” or whatever, and she’s an idiot.

    2. KoiFeeder*

      There are people who genuinely believe that influencers (hucksters? can we call them hucksters?) do not curate or edit their posts and are completely candid on their social media. I don’t know how they can believe that, but, well, they do.

        1. KoiFeeder*

          Hey, snake oil is very healthy as long as you get it from gently holding a lovely, living snake.

      1. Mints*

        There are different flavors of internet personalities, and some are perfectly curated coffee cup and handmade bowl of cherries, while some are “I’m keeping it real, all day rants and mini videos and 6 second jokes” (even if it’s artificial, that’s the style)

    3. CTT*

      I feel like she wants to be less the “here is my very curated Outfit Of The Day #Blessed #Sponsored” type of influencer and more YouTuber.

    4. WantonSeedStitch*

      Maybe she’s trying to show how “unfairly” the company is treating her, setting herself up as some kind of victim?

      1. Catabodua*

        The only other thing I can think of is she thought it would be useful for a future wrongful termination lawsuit?

  11. MB*

    This is one of those instances where anonymity on this site is unfortunate. I need to know everything there is about this person! It seems like she wouldn’t mind!


    1. Clorinda*

      It’s probably on Youtube. I mean, it’s almost definitely on Youtube. You’ll have to dig through hundreds of informative and useful videos on how to do a performance review/how to do well in your performance review to find it, though. Confession: I looked and didn’t find it, but I only glanced at the first two pages of results.

      1. Khatul Madame*

        I have already wasted 30 minutes I didn’t have on various search words and phrases.

      2. Seeking Second Childhood*

        Clorinda I looked too! I didn’t find it…but I found something possibly even more boring. Did you know people livestream themselves ASLEEP? WHY!?

        1. Works in IT*

          There’s a timelapse video of a guy sleeping, and his cat’s nocturnal antics as it climbs around and over him. That’s a good sleeping person video.

        2. Phony Genius*

          An empty chair on the video game streaming site Twitch supposedly once made hundreds of dollars in tips.

  12. MonkeyPrincess*

    In a dumpster fire of a day in a dumpster fire of a week in a dumpster fire of a year, this was the update I needed. OMG. Some people are just AMAZING.

  13. I Am a Patient Girl*

    WHAT???? Did she sign any type of NDA to work at your organization? Even if not, this just smacks of such phenomenally poor taste.

    1. I Am a Patient Girl*

      Also, did you find out why she was doing this? This just goes beyond any type of influencer behavior I can fathom.

    2. emmelemm*

      As per the original letter, the employee handbook basically explicitly said to keep your personal social media and the company completely separate, and yet she was pulling the company into every bit of social media she had at every turn. So it wasn’t just that it was weird and clueless, it was *explicitly* against policy.

      1. Yvette*

        I re-read the original. She did it right after being explicitly told not to! The only thing I can think of is that she somehow thought that she was protected by the First Amendment?

          1. Artemesia*

            This. The world is full of people who think that ‘I really really want it’ is an argument for hiring them (or heck watch Project Runway and see why ‘I’ should win). Students make the same argument for grades ‘I really really worked hard on this’ as if that was as important as ‘I really really did a terrific job on this.’ ‘really really’ is a phrase used a lot by the clueless and entitled.

        1. Daughter of Ada and Grace*

          “I can’t remember where I heard this, but someone once said that defending a position by citing free speech is sort of the ultimate concession; you’re saying that the most compelling thing you can say for your position is that it’s not literally illegal to express.” – XKCD 1357 (mouseover text)

          1. Artemesia*

            And even in the public sphere there is a failing to understand that ‘I have a right to say this’ and ‘it is right for me to say this’ or ‘a good idea for me to say this’ are not the same thing. You can say that racist thing but I can shun you for it.

            1. Vicky Austin*

              Exactly. Just because you’re allowed to say something doesn’t mean you should.

        2. Arctic*

          Not protected by the First Amendment. But some of her actions from the previous letter (such as tagging fellow employees) are protected by the National Labor Relations Act.

          1. fhqwhgads*

            I don’t really see how tagging employees on a possibly completely irrelevant social media post inherently violates that. If she were trying to discuss working conditions with them, sure, but simply tagging them on whatever, whenever, not so much.

  14. Kettricken Farseer*

    Oy with the influencers – such narcissism! I don’t get this trend at all, other than they can make money if they can get enough followers to run ads. So people seem to be doing anything for that, even if it costs them a job.

    1. Wednesday of this week*

      I must say, I called it on the original post. I thought she was doing the whole thing as a social media performance or leading up to writing a book, and I was wondering if this is a controversial industry or otherwise a job that followers would be especially curious about. I don’t think the mindset is “even if it costs me a job”–she probably never took the job in good faith or intended to stay in it.

      1. Kettricken Farseer*

        TBH, I don’t get the whole ‘put your life online for everyone to see’ mentality. Maybe it’s because I grew up without the internet? I can’t imagine how self-centered a person has to be to think along those lines. I run across these online, and they always say, “So many of you keep asking me about…” and I’m like, no, you have 324 followers, nobody is asking you anything.

        1. Environmental Compliance*

          I’m glad that I muted my mic during this conference call break, because I just snortlaughed at the “nobody is asking you anything”. It’s something I’ve very often thought (or said out loud) at those exact people who are all “omgomg you guiiiiisseeee you just keep asking about [some inane thing]”. No. No one is asking anything. I have 225 follows on my shop’s Insta. No one comments anything other than “oooh, pretty!” or “what’s the pattern/yarn?”. Absolutely no one is going to care in any form on my general daily life unless it’s a pet picture.

        2. Dust Bunny*

          My life is not that interesting. I honestly cannot think of a faster way to drive people away than to post videos of myself sorting paper all day long (archives/rare books).

          1. Matilda Jefferies*

            I’m a records manager with latent archival tendencies. I would absolutely watch you sorting papers! Maybe not all day, but I’d give you a click or two at least…

            1. pleaset AKA cheap rolls*

              I think archival processing (or even processing certain types of records) could be turned into decent video content. Not a live stream of a regular day, but 10 minutes on the most interesting thing you come across in a week – looking at it, some commentary about its provenance, etc, how it relates to the broader world. Totally doable.

              1. selena*

                You made me think: is there any job that wouldn’t be interesting in ‘best 5 minutes of your week’ snippets. Any job that you wouldn’t want to see a How Stuff’s Made about?

                1. pleaset AKA cheap rolls*

                  I think any job could have a good five minutes. But, say, a meat processing plant might not have good content week after week. Whereas archives could sustain new stuff every week.

        3. AnotherAlison*

          My cousin’s daughter would like to be an influencer. She has about 8,000 IG followers, but seems to get around 30 likes on posts and no comments. She is sober, has two young kids, and is a single mom. Sometimes, she tries to be real about her past struggles and I think I could deal with her if it was a recovery blog. Most of the time it is just cute pictures of herself or her kids, and no honesty about all the different poor choices she’s still making. Her 2nd son was born this year, and last year, it was all cute pictures of her BF and what a great little family they were. . .things didn’t work out because he is still an alcoholic and was on house arrest in another county for her entire pregnancy.

          I mean, do whatever you want on the internet. I don’t care. I just have to remember that there is nothing real online!

          1. Double A*

            Although this is kind of a bummer for her kids, who don’t get a choice in whether to be broadcast to 8000 people (even if most of them don’t care)

            1. allathian*

              Yeah. But adult children suing their parents for posting pix of them as kids will probably be a thing a few years from now. The first cases have already happened. I mean, it was bad enough when parents could tell their friends about the things we did as children that they thought were cute or interesting but that we though were embarrassing. I do hope that no thoughtless posts by a parent will affect any Z-gener’s employment, but I wouldn’t bet on it.

          2. The Man, Becky Lynch*

            It’s always about the actual engagements, not the “followers”. You can literally buy followers and there are “follow back” accounts everywhere.

            I mean, I’m here for dog instagrams but it’s creepy AF to me to follow someone who posts just about their family, unless I know them.

            1. selena*

              Afaik advertisers have also wisened up to the fact that followers =/= engagement
              If you want to make money (or get freebees) you need to get your audience talking back at you.

            2. AnotherAlison*

              Yeah, I have no idea how many are actual human followers, but it is not an interesting enough IG to be many.

        4. ThisColumnMakesMeGratefulForMyBoss*

          I don’t get it either. I can count on one hand how many times I’ve taken a selfie. #getoffmylawn

        5. Artemesia*

          I remember a tour bus years ago when the leader broke in on the way to this amazing archeological site, with ‘so many of you have asked me about Tomaso Somethinglini and the art of the cameo and so we are going to make a brief stop at the cameo shop so you have a chance to see his art.’ I was furious to be paying and then spending time in some huckster brother in law’s tourist trap. My husband and I actually left the bus and walked to the archeological site we had planned to visit. We never do tours — except when we literally don’t have a better option to get to an out of the way place and this is one of the reasons why. ‘many of you have asked me to —(reprint my old recipe instead of write a new column, share the link to my merch etc etc)’.

        6. Tidewater 4-1009*

          You remind me of the early days of the internet. I was very cautious – I *never* posted my photo or any details that would help anyone track me down. As a young woman I had years of fending off creeps every time I left my home, and the last thing I needed was internet stalkers too!
          But other people were posting their photos, details of their family and relationships, in many cases their home address! I remember it was a thing for people to post their resumes, with their address at the top. Yikes.
          I used photos of flowers for my profile photos until recently.

          1. 'Tis Me*

            I was telling a younger friend to be careful about what info he was sharing online, back in maybe 2004. He didn’t take me seriously until I gave him his home address and telephone number (his surname and town were public; it was one of about 5 possible results in the online phone directory, but I picked correctly first attempt). Even people who don’t think they have shared enough information to ID them may have done so.

    2. MsSolo*

      I have a couple of cousins-in-law who are influencers, and it’s interesting getting a peek into the culture. One does a lot of work out pics, the other is artsy beach selfies and inspirational quotes, and both get some sponsorship (neither links their influencer social media to their actual, real, full time jobs). One thing I will say is the community is very positive; everyone is constantly commenting on each other’s posts to say they love the poster, they’re gorgeous, they’re stunning, they wish they were there, miss them so much… It’s a massive reciprocal love-in, and I completely get why people want to be part of it. I’m rather less clear on why people like the OP’s employee take the opposite tack and want to double down on sharing the mundane and negativity in the name of realness – that’s not going to be a reciprocal love-in community! Everyone knows it’s all a fantasy online, so why not a soft-focus red wine and sand between your toes fantasy?

  15. AdAgencyChick*

    Oh. My. God.

    OP, sorry you had to live through the parts going up to this, but thank you for the entertainment!

  16. INTP99*

    Yes, was she motivated by sort of political agenda (e.g. work and capitalism suck so hard, so let’s make fun of my employer on a livestream and see what happens!) or just casting a wide net (e.g. any publicity is good publicity)? So weird.
    Also, where people think it makes sense to be a lousy employee who gets fired and then wants reference? Or even better, lousy, fired, “now I put in resume and expect to be hired at a new place being managed by manager who fired me.”

  17. Sara without an H*

    So far, we’ve had Joseph Stalin as Employee of the Month AND a social media “influencer” live-streaming a less-than-stellar performance review…and it’s only the 1st of the month.

    I shudder to think what we’ll be seeing on AAM by June 30.

    1. EPLawyer*

      I don’t think she thought it would be negative. Influencers tend to be narcissists as noted above. She did not believe it would be negative. She thought everyone would praise her greatly, give her a raise, and promote her to CEO immediately. She knew employee of the month was out, Stalin got it again that suck up.

    2. Detective Amy Santiago*

      I would like to re-propose my suggestion for an Ask a Manager reality show where the craziest subjects of letters get thrown in a workplace together.

        1. Detective Amy Santiago*

          Not even gonna lie… I would pay a LOT of money to watch Alison go in and straighten out the government.

          1. Juneybug*

            So much money would leave my bank to watch her in action!! #allisonisasuperhero

            1. LGC*

              Shoot, raise my tax rate to 100% for this. Raise EVERYONE’S tax rate to 100% if that’s what it takes. (Or at least the billionaires’.)

    3. Artemesia*

      There are murder hornets in the PNW, radioactive pigs in Eastern Europe (yes I didn’t make this up — it is from Chernoble), locusts in the US South and the Middle East, rats starved for restaurant food (aren’t we all) are turning to cannibalism, and monkeys stole and chewed on and ran off with COVID infected blood samples in India — and it is only the first of June 2020.

        1. Tierrainney*

          Are you telling me that the Onion isn’t a reputable news source? (sarcastic laugh)

  18. Heidi*

    Maybe she thinks that documenting everything about her life will be of historical importance as a study of office life in the early 2000’s. Maybe she imagines people in the future will reference it like Samuel Pepys diary.

    1. INTP99*

      Yes, without any info whatsoever, I lean toward thinking something like this – what else could she be meaning to try to influence other than a snapshot of post-industrial labour relations???

  19. Mayor of Llamatown*

    I want to know how you found out she was live streaming! Did she own up to it?

    1. C in the Hood*

      She probably tagged the company, like she did with the earlier posts.
      Well, at least she made the decision easy for the company…

  20. bunniferous*

    I know it isn’t possible but I wouldn’t mind seeing her social media postings just to see how bat crap crazy the rest of it is. But this sure takes the award for bananacrackers today.

  21. OrigCassandra*

    The confidentiality breach here is astounding. The person being reviewed is not the only person who deserves not to have the entire freakin’ world listening in on a review conversation!

    I mean, imagine if there were trade secrets or confidential client/customer/student(!)/patient(!!!!) information coming up in the course of the review. Yiiiiiiiiiikes.

    1. WantonSeedStitch*

      Yeah, this made me cringe too! I’ve mentioned confidential stuff in performance reviews, for sure. Donor names, etc. Not cool at all.

      1. Gazebo Slayer*

        Yep. If I’d worked with her, I’d be in a frenzy of paranoia right now about that.

    2. Snow globe*

      Not to mention recording secretly which is against the law in many states. If this is Facebook, it’s almost certainly against terms of service if OP wanted it taken down.

    3. CM*

      I know — confidentiality breach! Illegal wiretapping! So much WTF here even beyond this person’s bizarre choices. At least the egregiousness of this made the managers rethink their policy of giving endless second chances.

      I am also very curious how they found out she was livestreaming and would love a comment update from the OP on this.

  22. PollyQ*

    Alison looks like a helluva prophet in her answer to the original question:

    If she continues after that — after you’ve put up a big sign saying “don’t walk into this hole if you want to keep your job” and she has deliberately stepped right into the hole while looking you squarely in the face and saying “watch me do it” — at that point, she’s firing herself.

  23. AnotherAlison*

    Who would follow this type of influencer? I mean, I read this blog, but I would only read a daily update about someone’s workday if it was exceptionally hilarious. The OP’s employee might be unintentionally hilarious though. . .livestreaming one’s firing is sort of funny. Maybe?

  24. Mockingjay*

    Alison predicted this beautifully in the first post:

    ‘If she continues after that — after you’ve put up a big sign saying “don’t walk into this hole if you want to keep your job” and she has deliberately stepped right into the hole while looking you squarely in the face and saying “watch me do it” — at that point, she’s firing herself. ‘

    1. Llellayena*

      And they get so upset when you follow through with what the clearly stated consequences are. Reminds me of a 3-year old who I told “if you throw the ball in the street again, I’m going to take it away and you don’t get it back.” He stands at the curb, throws the ball, and then starts screaming when I don’t give it to him after retrieving it from the street…

      1. allathian*

        Yeah. But that was a good life lesson in how actions have consequences. But it’s tragic that a twentysomething or older person hasn’t managed to learn this lesson.

  25. blackcat*

    OMG! How did you find out about the livestreaming? What did you say?
    I have so many questions about that moment! You don’t have to answer them! But OMG! WTF?!

  26. BRR*

    There have been many times where I have felt like I exercised poor judgement. Then Alison publishes something like this.

    1. Kyrielle*

      Right? My worst poor-judgement moments (which definitely exist) are not up to this standard. And hopefully never will be.

      1. Thankful for AAM*

        When Alison asks for stories of our early work selves and the mistakes we made.

        Back in 2020 I got my first professional job. I was so exited I posted about it all over social media and even live streamed my first performance review. I was so excited, could not wait to share the good news when, to my surprise, . . . .

  27. Stormy Weather*

    I can honestly understand wanting to record a performance review, but livestreaming it? That takes some serious chutzpah.

    I once had a job where I had to sign a document saying I would never mention the name of the company in any online format, text, chat, web, nothing. I don’t completely disagree with that.

    I work for a national nonprofit, so my posts about work are generally news about the organization, like awards or other important news.

    As a general rule, I do not friend people I work with. After I’ve left a job, sure. There can be exceptions.

    1. I'm just here for the cats*

      Wait, so you couldn’t text someone where you worked? I can understand social media but text is like a phone conversation. Did they say you couldn’t tell anyone where you worked? What were you a spy for CIA?

      1. Snow globe*

        We’ve all seen examples of someone taking a screenshot of a text conversation and then posting it online. Clearly this company is worried that its employees might say something negative in a text.

      2. No-name*

        I’m not the person you’re asking, but this same thing is in my contract. I can tell people, say, the building address (if they’re picking me up, meeting me for lunch etc.), but I can’t put the company *name* in text. So I can text “pick me up by the Chocolate Teapots building” but not “gah, my boss at Chocolate Teapots did this thing today”, and I can tell people verbally that I work for Chocolate Teapots, you just omit the specific company name in text and honestly it makes very little impact on conversations about work because the company name is rarely the thing I’d be discussing with friends and family anyway. I also can’t list the name of the company on things like LinkedIn or Facebook (although some of the managers do, so that might be a negotiable or non-enforced clause).

        1. Stormy Weather*

          I’m surprised about LinkedIn (it didn’t exist when I had the job I mentioned).

          Anyone who assumes we ever had privacy on the ‘net is delusional.

        2. Arctic*

          A workplace cannot restrict people from discussing their employment with other employees be it through text or social media.

        3. Deer Field*

          @No-name, why do they have that policy? Do you work for the CIA? (only kind of joking…)

  28. Amber Rose*

    Ugh. People who aspire to be influencers are such an odd breed. This one sounds particularly off the wall. Imagine being so self centered you think people want to watch your employee review live streamed.

    1. Kettricken Farseer*

      And asking businesses to give them products/services for free because exposure.

    2. EA in CA*

      I have a close friend that is considered an influencer and she would NEVER think to bring it into her place of work. She uses an alias and you would only find her accounts if you happen to stumble on to it. Not everyone wants to be part of it and she absolutely honors that. This girl is just an extreme example and just wants to become viral at anyone else’s expense.

  29. ZSD*

    I really want to know how many people were watching this livestream, and if any of them weren’t immediate friends/family of the employee.

  30. CBH*

    I feel like she doesn’t even understand how all aspects of her performance, review and recommendation request are just wrong and gone about in an unprofessional way.

    1. Where’s the Orchestra?*

      I’m amazed she wanted a reference from a place where it sounds like her time employees was only a month. I think most people would probably have left a one month job off a resume unless it was planned to only be a month (temping, freelance contract, etc).

  31. Wintermute*

    Ooh, You know I nerd-sniped myself on this one, wondering if livestreaming a meeting with management could be considered a protected labor activity. The conclusion I came to was *probably* not but when privacy concerns and labor organization clash it’s usually the labor rights side that wins, but only in a state with one-party-recording consent, if not no matter what the NLRB would say it’s still a crime. You could try to raise necessity as a defense but only if there was an actual labor dispute at issue not a hypothetical “see how they treat me” thing.

    1. I'm just here for the cats*

      It’s one thing to record for your own needs, it’s different to Livestream or share with the public, especially with out permission

  32. BiNs*

    If she really, really, really wants to be known, I think OP should just let us know her name and social media profile :)

  33. NW Mossy*

    Well, she certainly influenced me to be confounded and weirdly impressed by her formidable rejection of feedback.

  34. General von Klinkerhoffen*

    It’s got to the point where I’m not sure she understands what a job even is.

    And honestly what it makes me think of most is a kind of 2020 Truman Show, only Truman is in on it.

    1. Eleanor and Chidi’s Love Child*

      The difference between this wannabe influencer and The Truman Show is (spoiler alert) Truman didn’t know his entire life was being broadcast live. And once Truman knew, he left.

      Also, someone who live streams her workday is definitely a narcissist.

      1. Zzz*

        SMH. Still can’t believe someone was live streaming their review. Talking about a lack of judgment.

  35. rafiology*

    I think you (or HR) should give a reference and warn potential employers about her behaviour. Social media influencer indeed.

  36. Jen*

    OP, I have to know what kind of place you work at?? Is it a very high-profile employer (like Facebook or Walmart) or a high-profile industry (politics or entertainment)? I didn’t see this addressed in the comments last time, but I might have missed it. Please give us some kind of clues, b/c I need to understand why she would have thought this would be an interesting or exciting topic to “influence” on.

  37. Sled dog mama*

    Just when I get my brain rebooted and working after the last one I see this…I’m taking the rest of the day off to ponder

  38. Richard Hershberger*

    Influencers: My ten year old’s life ambition is to be a Youtuber, though she is willing to consider being a doctor as a fallback career. Anyone can be a Youtuber, but only a tiny, tiny fraction make money at it. This person? My guess is that she never considers the possibility of failure. Getting herself fired in pursuit of her bigger goal is, in her mind, GUMPTION! In the meantime she is making herself otherwise unemployable.

    1. Pennyworth*

      Before influencers were a thing, there were growing numbers of children putting ‘being famous’ as a life goal. Researcher attributed it to our increasing narcissism. It is not going to end well.

      1. allathian*

        I think it’s amazing that Isaac Asimov made a prediction in one of his stories how in the not too distant future, one third of humanity would make a living by entertaining the other two thirds. We’re not quite there yet, but certainly many aspire to it!

      2. MsSolo*

        I mean, is it, or is it just something we’re aware of because we can aggregate that data now? Kids have a limited perspective on the world, so of course the jobs they’re going to want are either those they can see in their day to day lives or famous people’s, because they’re the jobs their aware of. “Being famous” is broader in scope than being a sports star or a singer, but kids have wanted to be those for centuries. They’ve also wanted to be dustbin men, much to many an aspirational middle class parent’s chagrin, because they see the dustbin man every week and the doctor only when they’re feeling miserable.

  39. curious*

    I would love to have seen her reaction when she realized her negative review was being live streamed.

    1. irene adler*

      She’s probably delusional enough to believe that the review is simply more evidence of how she’s being abused by her employer.

      1. Vicky Austin*

        Exactly! Let’s hope she doesn’t have wealthy parents who can afford a lawyer to sue the company for firing her.

  40. Karon*

    I am sure that this must have been addressed in one of the conversations they had with her, but I would have loved to be present when someone asked her, “Why are you doing this?” If I asked this, I would wait in complete silence until she answered. I just want to know how she justified this in her mind.

  41. Thornfir*

    This is even more amazingly bonkers than Sally and her master.

    …unless it is Sally.

    1. Vicky Austin*

      Probably not. This employee genuinely doesn’t seem to know the difference between right and wrong; while Sally just wanted to “freak the mundanes.”

  42. TeapotNinja*

    I’ve read some real whoppers in here, but for utter stupidity this one is way up there. My jaw is still on the floor. She needs help.

  43. Max's Manager*

    And here I thought it was insane when we had someone ask for a reference after rage quitting via text at 11pm without two weeks’ notice.

  44. Kettricken Farseer*

    And really, what the hell could she be documenting about her day? Is it like super detailed?

    7:00am – I woke up to the alarm, went to the bathroom, put on my robe
    7:30 – I have had 2 cups of coffee and so now it’s time to poop.
    8:00 – Ate a bran muffin (you know, for the pooping)

    I mean….????

    1. The Man, Becky Lynch*

      This is also what Twitter was invented for. But instead she wants to strap on a Go-Pro and get it all on video too.

      1. Keymaster of Gozer*

        Hopefully not for the results of the 8am muffin too…

        (Although now I’m imagining her videoing her time in the office bogs, complete with rating her farts and grading the bog roll, and I’m giggling like I’m not middle aged)

  45. AngryOwl*

    I wonder if she expected to be fired and hoped to blast the company for hiring someone in the midst of a pandemic—riding that wave to fame.

  46. So sleepy*

    Ok, I desperately want to know HOW it came up in the meeting. But also, you should totally agree that you would happy to provide an “accurate and honest” reference if contacted . “Well, she did a bit of work, refusing training, and publicly posted daily updates about her interactions and dissatisfaction on social media. Oh, and when we met with her to discuss that we were giving her one last chance to improve, she live streamed the meeting without our consent”. It’s not defamation if it’s all true!

  47. Three Flowers*

    This is one of the most whackadoodle things I can recall seeing on AAM, and that’s saying something.

  48. Bookworm*

    That is out there, OP. Thanks for the update.

    There are lots of people who just live for this kind of drama. For sympathy, for money, for likes/views, etc. Glad she was let go.

  49. Iron Chef Boyardee*

    We think she’s aiming to be an influencer of some kind.

    She did influence her superiors by reinforcing their belief that the decision to fire her was the right way to go.

  50. Laura H.*

    Face palming hard right now…

    And this is why I’m thankful to be social media savvy, but clueless in enough areas so as to prevent a self-tanking of my career./ Thankful that there are people out there um… dumber than me in certain areas of knowledge.

    Best wishes on a good hire this next time OP. :)

  51. AJ*

    Desperately googling facebook AND my performance review. Please oh please I hope I find this video :)

  52. Lunita*

    This is almost like she was doing the job as a kind of stunt. Like how far can I take this before they fire me?” Otherwise it’s crazy. And she asked for a reference. Wow.

  53. The Ginger Ginger*

    I mean there is already so much wrong with that, but don’t you legally have to ask for permission to “film” like that in situations where the subject has legitimate expectation of privacy? That is….gutsy. And really misguided.

  54. Jennifer*

    With all that’s going on right now I needed this laugh! She livestreamed her disciplinary meeting! How did they find out she was streaming, I wonder? I don’t even feel sorry for her at this point and I’ve normally felt awful for anyone losing their job, even when it’s kind of their fault. I know how much being out of work sucks.

    Maybe her influencer “career” will take off.

  55. Bex*

    When I first read the original letter I wondered if influencer was what the worker was going for. Still. Am amazed at the sheer intestinal fortitude required to livestream your 30 day performance review!!!

    Just wow. To all of this. This is a level of bizarre and weird that I didn’t know existed.

    Wonder if she’ll livestream her reaction to the termination paperwork.

  56. MechanicalPencil*

    She doesn’t need to use OP as a reference. All the hiring companies need to do is google her, and I’m sure all of her social media sites are probably linked to her real name. So OP, I feel like you really won’t have to say much once any hiring manager sees all of the posts and the video of the live streamed performance review. And then I’m sure she’s going to have a reaction video to her termination paperwork.

  57. The Man, Becky Lynch*

    I for one have been in love with “reality tv” forever, as a fan, hell no to being on one. So I don’t judge someone for that dream. But the fact she’s so bland and yet extra that she tries to live-stream her actual WORK LIFE, yikes.

    I can only hope she gets herself on one of those lovely TLC programs I die for. One of the ladies on 90 Day Fiance Before the 90 Days is an “influencer”. She’s as painful to watch as you’d imagine. Stick with just rambling about consumer products and your love for food, or let people pay to watch you eat weird stuff or do your laundry. You don’t shit where you sleep and try to pull these stunts at paying jobs, that are a guaranteed paycheck verses “maybe” you’ll get an endorsement or seen by god knows who is even important in the YouTube era.

  58. Bananers*

    I………..I’m not sure what exactly I was expecting this update to be, but it definitely was not this! Holy moly. I’m glad you’ve got a good boss and team, and now a truly amazing “weirdest workplace experience” story!

    1. Tabby*

      I’m sure she’d be foolish enough to tell them why she got fired:
      “They wouldn’t let me post a performance review! After telling me I couldn’t live stream/blast them on social media!”

      I mean, I work at a dog daycare, and I can’t randomly post the dogs on my social media. Because they’re not my dogs. And I basically have to keep my work life separate from my real life. Which is not a problem. I DO comment on their social media — I tend to say stuff like, “Oh, look at X dog! I remember that day, and it was hilarious to see that dignified dog belly flop 5x in the pool!” Or something cute like that.

      Basically, don’t be foolish. lol

    2. The Man, Becky Lynch*

      She doesn’t seem to have been employed anywhere for very long…so I’d be interested what her work history is fully. Her bad track record would really leave her out of unemployment benefits.

  59. A Poster Has No Name*

    Between this and the previous post, I have to think the quarantine is really getting to some people.

    Or have somehow made them think they can bring the crazy? Not sure, but wow.

  60. Hooboy*

    Look at all the commenters saying they are looking for her and want to know who would pull such a bonehead move. Her stunt is getting exactly the attention she wanted, and its appearing on this site is probably exactly the sort of thing she is hoping for.

    Current and future employment appears to be expendable to her. Rolling those dice is pretty risky–lotta ways that can go snake-eyes on a person–but if she finds this, she’ll probably feel she’s off to a good start. Well, I wish her luck, as long as she stays far away from my workplace.

    1. Bob*

      All publicity is good publicity has some truth to it. But sometimes it just blows up in your face.

  61. Bob*

    Did she want to play out being the star of the movie EDtv?
    Then she wanted a reference?

    She is a few ingredients short of a fruitcake.

  62. Bowserkitty*

    I love when we get a new classic. Livestreaming your review? Just….amazing. Wow.

    1. Bowserkitty*

      Actually, now I am really curious if she got any reactions/comments during it…

  63. LGC*

    Y’all, this is the laugh I needed.



    I can’t. I CAN’T, and I have seen some stuff in my day.

  64. Jenny*

    I was waiting for an update on this one! She definitely went out with a bang and I can’t believe anyone is this obtuse.
    I hope she is happy with her calling as a influencer but the market is so over saturated I feel she will miss a steady paycheck. Or perhaps this is concept are like Joaquin Phoenix did for his documentary?

  65. Pomona Sprout*

    Livestreaming…. her… performance… review….. !?!?!?
    Man, I wish we could use emojis here. I would go to town with this one. *sigh*

    Definitely one for the wtaf files!

  66. Random IT person*


    What would someone with that work “ethic” influence?
    A book on examples “how not to be THAT employee”?
    Or ‘Guys, OMG, I like totally made it on this like website about, you know, like work. It`s called askamanager.. but you know like it totally should be called ‘asktheinfluencer’ OMG LOL’…


  67. Who Just Farted*

    My life’s goal now is to look at this former employee’s social media accounts.

Comments are closed.