Public Shaming’s That Ruined People’s Lives
Cameras are everywhere, and people flipping out or doing nasty things in public can easily wind up as a featured YouTube video within minutes. Once that video is out there, there’s no turning back. And, a lot of people derive pleasure in others misfortune and enjoy mocking people, anonymously of course. Now some people deserve what they get, bit others were just caught doing something strange or by mistake in public and ended up getting stalked and tormented relentlessly for their actions. Sometimes the public shaming they endured changed their lives for good. Here are some examples of public shaming that ruined people’s lives.
#1 Dog P00p Girl
In one of the first publicized cases of public shaming, this happened about 10 years ago in South Korea. A young woman entered a subway with her small dog, who did the potty on the floor of the train. People asked her to clean it up, but she refused and exited the train. Someone had taken this photograph and posted it all over the internet and before long she began getting harassed. It eventually got so bad that she had to go into hiding and drop out of school. She later said she didn’t clean it up because she was so embarrassed. People seeing the picture assumed she had pooped on the floor.
#2 Gil Valle – The Cannibal Cop
You may have heard of this guy in the national news, if not online. He was an NYC cop who seemed legit enough except for one thing.He had a fetish for kidnapping and cannibalism. He would go to online chat rooms, using his wife;s picture to lure young men to various locations. He would kidnap the would-be suitors in hopes of eating them, though that never happened, apparently. He became known in the media as the Cannibal Cop. When his wife’s friends alerted her to him using her photos, she called the FBI and told them she feared for her life. He was arrested and convicted on conspiracy to kidnap charges. He spent 19 months in prison before he was exonerated on all charges. He can’t go anywhere without being noticed and hated.
#3 Lindsey Stone – Disrespecting The Fallen
This lady deserved what she got. Lindsey Stone was chaperoning a bunch of adults with learning disabilities at the Arlington National Cemetery. The group was posing for photographs at various monuments and graves. Lindsey thought she would be cute and posed in front of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, where there is a sign that says “Arlington National Cemetery” and “Silence and Respect.” After getting back to work, she posted her “funny” picture to Facebook, but friends and followers did not think it was all that hilarious. The post went viral on social media with 30,000 comments on FB alone. Many wanted her fired from her job and eventually she was. She suffered through rape and death threats and stayed at home for over a year without leaving. She now has another job but is still afraid that people will come after her because of the photo.
#4 Glenn Taylor – Boy Scout Stupidity
This was from the national news and media. A BoyScout leader took his troop to the Goblin Valley State Park, where Glenn Taylor and his friends went off on their own and decided to destroy a historic and rally insane rock formation. One of the boys filmed the entire destruction as Gleen worked his ass off to tumble the boulder over from its pedestal, something that took hundreds of thousands of years to form. The Internet obviously got just a little bit mad about this. The end result was Taylor being sentenced to a year probation and fined for criminal mischief. You might feel sorry for this kid because nobody has taught him wrong from right and about history or personal space. The world decided he was a total jerk and he continues to get shamed for his actions.
#5 Taylor Chapman – Dunkin’ Donuts Meltdown
This is a sad story that could have been avoided had this young girl not have posted the video fo herself being a total bitch to YouTube and Snapchat. She believed that she was right and the Dunkin’ Donuts employee was in the wrong. The whole thing was about her not getting a receipt at a Dunkin’ Donuts the night before, which she apparently thought that meant she could then act like a racist, and a totally mean lunatic. She called the worker everything she could think of in the clip and he acted politely. She was wrong, and the video went viral. She lost her job and had to change her phone number because of being harassed. This is a tough one, because as it turns out Taylor is mentally ill, but still, she was just so horrible to the employees; a shaming such as this one might serve as a warning to others. Reports surfaced last year that she took her own life over the issue but that has not been confirmed.
#6 Paul Christoforo – Rude To Disabled Gamer
He was shamed for being a pretty rotten human being. The incident started when a disabled gamer was waiting for a new game to be released at his place of employment. Other patrons began filming the incident as Paul began telling the handicapped boy to “get out of his chair and stand like everyone else” and “put your big boy pants on”. The clip got posted, of course, and people began harassing Paul endlessly. He kept arguing back with even worse responses. Eventually, someone took all of the conversations and video to the company headquarters and paul got the boot! He has continued to have a hard time finding work, and it couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy.
#7 Stephen Fowler – Wife Swap Disaster
Fowler was a contestant on the show Wife Swap, and when one thinks of it, isn’t being on a show like that sort of like being publicly shamed all by itself? Fowler decided to take it one step further when he got his new “wife” by insulting people who he considered a lower class than him, as well as soldiers and people who he considered to be overweight. Now you know it has to be bad when people that watch Wife Swap think that you went too far. Websites were created to protest his awful behavior, places that he was doing business with said they wanted nothing to do with him anymore, and he had to retire from two different charities.
#8 Jennifer Wilbanks – Cold Feet
Now we have to admit some of these people did some monumentally dumb things to cause them to be publicly shamed. One of these is Jennifer Wilbanks, who became known all over the world as the “Runaway Bride.” She was set to be married when she got cold feet. While most of us just would have told our groom we were not into him, Jennifer ran away for real. When she could not be found it was theorized that it was possible that her husband killed her. Then she turned up on the other side of the country and made up a story she was kidnapped and raped. For some reason this story made news all over the country, and took on a life of its own. Well, it turns out she just took off and made up the whole story. She was made fun of mercilessly for this, and rightfully so. It certainly didn’t help her cause that her eyes make her look totally crazy.
#9 Adria Richards – The Tattletale
Adria Richards was at a computer programming conference when she heard two men behind her making jokes about “big dongles.” She took a picture of them and tweeted the photo and wrote how the guys were not cool for making jokes about big dongles. For some reason, this took off all over the Internet and one of the men was eventually fired. Richards was also fired from her job for making all of this public. This was interesting in the sense that sometimes the person that is attempting to do the shaming ends up being shamed herself. Most of us can identify with the dub that makes a dumb dongle joke, no matter how dumb it is, much more than we can with the tattletale who tries to get someone fired for doing so.
#10 Melissa King – Miss “Provocateur”
Melissa King is a former Miss Teen Delaware. That might be interesting to some people but not all that many, probably. What is interesting to a lot of people is that it turns out she was the star of an adult film. The story ended up on both CNN and Fox News, among other places. King ended up having to give up her crown and was publicly humiliated all over the world. On the one hand you have to feel kind of bad for Melissa- that must have been awful. On the other hand though, who does that? You only get to choose one, you either compete in a teen beauty contest, or you do adult films, there really is no “Hmmm, I think I will do both” option. While you have to feel badly for her, you also have to wonder how she thought the whole thing would fly.
#11 Michael Brutsch – The Reddit Nightmare
Violentacrez was a well known Reddit troll and forum moderator. He often operated in some of the darker subreddits, ones that are purposely meant to be offensive. Some of the things that he wrote about were violence against women, incest, and rape. While these things are obviously awful, let me repeat: He was a troll on Reddit; if you don’t dig him, then just don’t go there. At one point a subreddit called Jailbait that featured young girls in bikinis that violentacrez moderated ended up being featured on a news show hosted by Anderson Cooper. A reporter from Gawker tracked him down and identified him as a 49- year-old man named Michael Brutsch. He ended up trying to defend himself publicly, but it did not go well, and he was fired from his job.
#12 Justine Sacco – First Class Racist
This is one of the best public shaming’s ever. Or worst, depending on your perspective. Justine Sacco was flying from New York City to South Africa to meet family for the holidays. To pass the time she started tweeting. First, it was “’Weird German Dude: You’re in First Class. It’s 2014. Get some deodorant.’ – Inner monologue as I inhale BO. Thank God for pharmaceuticals.” Then she tweeted “Chilly – cucumber sandwiches – bad teeth. Back in London!” Finally, she tweeted, “Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDS. Just kidding. I’m white!” Although it should be obvious to all she was just messing around, her tweets went viral. By the time she landed she was the number one trending topic on Twitter. Tens of thousands of people responded by insulting and threatening her. The funniest part was, to them at least, that she had no idea it was happening. By the time she landed her world had blown up and she was fired immediately and says she is still feeling repercussions in her professional and personal life.
#13 Steve Bartman – He Cost The Cubs A Game
In game six of the 2003 National League Championship series, Steve Bartman, a Cubs fan, reached out to the field and deflected a ball that would have been caught. The Cubs outfielder, Moises Alou, was angered because he knew he could have caught it. The Cubs were leading at the time, but after that play, they fell apart and lost the game. The TV broadcast showed the play constantly while the Cubs lost. Fans dumped beer on him, and he had to be secretly escorted out of the stadium. He was attacked on the Internet and message boards and police guarded his house so he would not be physically attacked. Bartman went into hiding and changed his phone number. Now with the Cubs win in the 2016 World Series, there has finally been some forgiveness.