A Filipina cashier at a store in the United States was reduced to tears by a YouTube prankster who posed as a Walmart executive and persuaded her that she was fired.
On April 23, YouTuber Lauren Love, who has 147,000 subscribers, uploaded a video of herself pranking employees at a Walmart in Richmond, Texas. Love wore a disguise and posed as the CEO of Walmart and “fired” its employees, Click2Houston reported.
One of the victims of the prank was Filipina Maria Leones, who had been working in the store for six years. Leones said she was crushed by the prank and was in tears when she thought she was fired.
“At that very moment, I felt so little, because back home I had a very good reputation because I’m a professor,” Leones said.
Leones said she was distraught because of the prank as her job covers the medical expenses of her husband, who recently suffered a heart attack and underwent a quadruple bypass.
When Love realized her prank had gone too far, she stopped and apologized to Leones and assured her she was not getting fired. The video has been deleted from YouTube, but was later re-uploaded by other accounts.
On May 8, Love issued an apology for the prank. However, she also defended herself and said that she was not the first YouTuber to carry out such a prank. She said that she needed to create content that was entertaining.
“I feel honestly really bad. Do not feel bad for me, that was my mistake. I’m an entertainer so I expect good content that my viewers will enjoy. I do it purposely for entertainment,” Love said.
Walmart said in a statement that Love and the cameraman involved in the prank have been banned from their stores.
“This prank is offensive and the people responsible are no longer welcome in our stores. Our associates work hard every day to serve our customers. They do a fantastic job, deserve better than being subjected to such disrespect, and will continue to have our full support,” it said.