What are the dangers of filming your own dismissal on the TikTok trend?

The viral TikTok trend of filming one's own dismissal in real time and sharing the reaction on the social network can help overcome a difficult moment, but it can also have long-term professional consequences.

For example, a potential employer may see the video and decide not to hire the former employee. Furthermore, the trend can lead to consequences such as the reversal of dismissal without just cause to dismissal with just cause.

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What is #Layoffs used on TikTok

Brittany filmed her own firing and posted it on TikTok
Brittany Pietsch Image: Reproduction/TikTok

The trend that has become fashionable is to film the moment users are fired, usually in an online meeting. Since the end of last year, videos in which workers film their own dismissal have gone viral. Platform users use the hashtag #Layoffs to publicize the moment they are fired from the companies where they work.

The hashtag #layoffs on TikTok already has thousands of videos. User Brittany Pietsch was one of the first to go viral after posting a video showing her reaction to being fired from the company she worked for. The video already has more than 20 million views on the platform.

Brittany worked as an account executive at American IT company Cloudflare. On January 12, she posted a nine-minute video on TikTok with the caption: “when you know you’re going to get fired and record it.”

In most cases, the entire conversation is filmed, showing only the face of the person being fired, never the computer screen. Some debate with company representatives and even cry while hearing about their dismissal.

The content brings solidarity. The #layoffs hashtag on TikTok has already attracted more than 366 million views. This spike in interest is entirely expected as mass layoffs in the tech sector in 2023 usher in the new year.

From trend to trauma

Some people may find resignation videos transparent and empowering. Videos can help audiences relate to a difficult time. The comments section can also be a place to offer professional advice on how to get over a layoff.

According to experts in the field of organizational psychology, exposing your dismissal on social media is a delicate process not only for those who leave the company, but also for those who stay.

Filming the moment of dismissal in a hidden way can cause several types of problems. Firstly, from a psychological point of view, other attitudes can be much more assertive and beneficial. See some:

  • Accept the grief
  • Recognize emotions
  • Ask for help
  • Count on the support of people close to you
  • Try not to take it personally
  • Give yourself some time
  • Stay connected
  • Update your resume
  • Be open-minded and positive in your future approaches

Consequences of recording your dismissal and posting it on TikTok

User with cell phone in hand and posts his own resignation and posts it on TikTok
Image: Unsplash

Experts warn that filming and publishing the meeting in which the dismissal occurred can impact professional life in the short and long term. The company can take action regarding disclosure if it feels harmed. The company may also adopt other measures, including legal measures, to be compensated for the damage caused.

Turning a resignation into social media content, no matter how good the intentions, can have long-term professional consequences. An example is when looking for new professional opportunities

Lawyers claim that the exhibition can be considered an attack on the employer's image. If the company considers that the disclosure had a negative impact on its image, it may request compensation from the employee.

In Brazil, the tendency to film and publish one's own dismissal can have consequences such as:

  • The company can take action regarding disclosure if it feels harmed in relation to how it is perceived by potential new hires.
  • Video can also affect the image of the employer brand.
  • The company may also adopt other measures, including legal measures, to be compensated for the damage caused.
  • The trend may lead to the reversal of unfair dismissal for just cause.
  • The worker may be fined

What does layoff mean?

The term “layoff” is a cost reduction measure adopted by companies to restructure and adapt to current market conditions. The term, in English, when put in a free translation, can refer to “period of inactivity”

Layoff can be an alternative to mass layoffs. In layoff due to contract suspension, the company can suspend employees' activities for a minimum of two months and a maximum of five months.

The practice of layoffs can only be authorized with the provision of conventions or collective agreements. Another action that must be taken by the company's management is the publication of a general statement informing employees and the union of the terms of the contract suspension.

In Brazil, the criterion that legally establishes the possibility of layoff is Provisional Measure nº 2.164-41, which included article 476-A in the CLT.

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