M’sian Twitter user sparks outrage with photo of helper not “allowed” to eat with family
Maybe we should think twice before we tweet.
A Malaysian Twitter user was taught a lesson in jumping to conclusions after posting a photo on social media without context.
On Jan. 17 user Vivek, posted a photo on his account of a family eating a meal at a restaurant.
Three people were eating, while the fourth, who appeared to be a domestic helper, was not.
Vivek captioned the photo with the following:
“I absolute HATE people who does this. You bring your helper out to a restaurant and you don’t give her food. She sits there watching you eat. Where is your heart? Just because she is a maid, she can’t eat at the same time.
I hope y’all get food poisoning.”
The tweet went viral, racking up over 12,000 retweets.
Not the full picture
While some Twitter users expressed outrage over the apparent ill-treatment, others pointed out that Vivek did not know the full picture.
Even local blogger Xiaxue replied to the tweet, and gave a few alternate reasons for why the fourth woman was not eating together with the rest.
It seems a little presumptuous to speak with such conviction that the maid is disallowed to eat by the family. Maybe she doesn’t like this type of food, she’s not feeling well so she ate at home 1st, or is vegetarian or Muslim? How can you shame people without making sure first?
— 𝓧𝓲𝓪𝔁𝓾𝓮 ♥ (@Xiaxue) January 17, 2019
Another Twitter user Meera Semanther, with the handle @ponnumbalam, then claimed to be a personal friend of one of the women in Vivek’s photo.
She said that her friend Lin, her parents, and their domestic helper Melissa (a pseudonym) were the people in the photo.
Meera said she had known Lin for almost 20 years, and called her a “responsible” employer.
Lin was apparently “distraught” over the tweet, and explained her side of the story to Meera:
After Meera’s tweet was posted, Vivek deleted his original tweet with the photo.
He also made his Twitter account private.
Top image adapted from Vivek and @ponnumbalam’s Twitter pages.
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