Instagram is a social media website that is somewhat different than others such as Facebook and Twitter. While Facebook and Twitter are often utilized to spark conversations or share links, Instagram is mostly about the posting of images, such as personal pictures, memes and short videos. Users of Instagram have been known to take part in some harmless “trolling” every now and again. Major League Baseball superstar Bryce Harper learned all about this in September of 2015 when fans of the New York Mets flocked to Harper’s account to post three simple letters after the Mets swept the Washington Nationals: LGM.
Those and other similar posts are probably annoying to the person who is on the receiving end. They are also, for the most part, harmless. Some people fail to understand that there is a line that separates harmless Instagram posts from the type of pictures that could get somebody fired. Anybody who works in the medical field, let alone a nurse who has access to an emergency room, should probably refrain from snapping pictures of those types of scenes. One Instagram user was reminded in the summer of 2014 that sharing that type of content will put someone in danger of being fired.
Last but certainly not least is the case of the woman who hoped that she would one day make it to the main World Wrestling Entertainment roster. Controversial Instagram posts that she made in the past caught up with her near the end of the summer of 2015. Even being the girlfriend of the WWE World Heavyweight Champion did not keep her from being fired all because of Instagram. All would do well to remember that those “freedom of speech” laws do offer protections, but they may not be able to keep you from being fired over one Instagram post.
10. The Nurse
Katie Duke was a reality-television nurse who had been featured on the program New York Med. New York-Presbyterian Hospital put an end to that in July 2014 after Duke posted a picture of a trauma room that had clearly just been in use. The caption for the photo probably did not help Duke’s cause: “Man vs. 6 train.” Duke’s seven-year run working in the ER had come to an end, as that Instagram post got her fired. The story does not, however, conclude there. According to the NY Post, Duke found new employment working in the ER at Roosevelt Hospital.
9. The Day Care Worker
Being a day care worker is no easy job. One is tasked with taking care of children not his/her own, and those children can be handfuls every now and again. It is always a no-no to post pictures of what should be anonymous kids on websites such as Instagram. Using any social media website to poke fun at those kids is an offense that should get somebody fired. That is what happened to Jena Ferrel in August 2013 after it was discovered, as explained by BuzzFeed News Reporter Ryan Broderick, that she had unwisely used Instagram for her own amusement. Her employer found no humor in her posts.
8. The J. Crew Exec
J. Crew was already earning negative headlines in June 2015 when it was learned that 175 employees had been laid off. Alejandro Rhett was serving as the vice president of men’s merchandising at the company when he avoided losing his job. Rhett took to Instagram to celebrate, likening his situation to the plot of The Hunger Games novels and movies. FashionWeekDaily.com learned from what was said to be a “reliable source” that Rhett lost his job over the Instagram post. The website also obtained a statement from a J. Crew representative, one that claimed: “We do not condone this behavior in any way.”
7. The Art Teacher
Colorado visual arts high school teacher Traci Gauthier was seemingly attempting to get fired in March 2015 when she took to Instagram. The substitute, per The Daily Mail, stated that she hated the young man she referred to in the Instagram post. Gauthier also used hashtags to call the student a “pot head” and a “dorky white boy.” But wait. There’s more. Gauthier then chose to respond to the student after the student commented on her original Instagram post. It should not be surprising to anybody reading this piece that Gauthier was let go by the school because of her Instagram activities.
6. Lacoste Employee
Some things should be kept private. That includes certain comments about work conditions, such as a paycheck. Jefferson Wade Groom was a single father living in Brooklyn and working as a salesman at a Lacoste store in New York City in August 2013 when he signed onto his Instagram account to post a picture of his paycheck. This, according to the New York Daily News, violated a confidentiality contract, and thus Groom was fired. Even an Instagram post that is meant to remain private does not always stays hidden from all eyes. It was a regrettable decision to upload the picture of the paycheck.
5. The Subway “Artists”
Subway has sometimes referred to in-restaurant employees as being “Sandwich Artists.” This is probably not what the company had in mind. Ian Jett and Cameron Boggs were working at a Subway located in Columbus, Ohio whey they uploaded some disgusting and disturbing pictures on Instagram. Jett seemed to show himself placing his penis onto a loaf of bread. Boggs, meanwhile, claimed that he had frozen his own urine during a work shift. Both of those workers, per Pamela Engel of Business Insider, were fired because of the photos. That knowledge alone may not be enough to keep you from wanting to eat at home more often in the future.
4. Employee of the UFC Fighter
Jon Jones was holding the Ultimate Fighting Championship Light Heavyweight title in April of 2014 when he was in the news for allegedly using a homophobic slur on Instagram. The matter, as described by MMA Mania, turned out to be a misunderstanding. Jones, as do other famous athletes and celebrities, gave access to his social media pages to multiple members of his team. One of those people made the mistake of logging onto Jones’ personal account before that individual made the hateful comment. Be sure you can trust those who have access to your social media accounts, everybody, or else you could be headed for trouble.
3. The Russian Paramedic
Tatiana Kulikova was a paramedic who thought that it would be funny to take some offensive pictures of patients. She then posted them on her Instagram page. One of the photos, according to the Daily Dot, showed the paramedic “flipping off” a patient inside of an ambulance. The same Daily Dot story claims that Kulikova was fired because of the Instagram uploads. There are ways for one to deal with all of the stresses that come from being a paramedic. The actions taken by Kulikova do not come close to making the list, as patients deserve better from those who are treating them during times of need.
2. The Caregiver
While it should go without saying that people need to be careful about what they post on websites such as Instagram, there are instances where you could sympathize with somebody who was fired because of one picture. This is not one of those cases. A staff member at an assisted living facility was fired in April 2013 after the person, as explained by WCCO out of Minneapolis, uploaded a picture to Instagram of a client on a toilet. That person, who went unnamed in original reports, was fired, and people who commented on the WCCO story had little sympathy for the individual who was let go.
1. The Wrestler
Zahra Schreiber was hoping to be a WWE Diva as of the summer of 2015. That career dream took a serious blow when it was discovered that she had, in the past, uploaded what appeared to be pro-Nazi images on her Instagram page. Schreiber even, per an E Online story, defended at least one of those posts by saying the following: “The swastika means prosperity and luck. It was around way before Hitler turned it into an icon.” Those running WWE were not impressed with that explanation, and Schreiber was fired. She later apologized for the Instagram pictures, but it was too late.