At least this poor woman -- who clearly didn't realize she was still on camera -- has the thanks and appreciation of Twitter for teaching us all what not to do.
You never know what's going to go viral and sometimes you never know that you're going to go viral. It's almost never a good thing when one of the non-famous folks of the world do it, and that proved especially true for "Poor Jennifer," who achieved viral sensation on Sunday for one seriously embarrassing fail.
With the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic continuing to ramp up in the United States, more and more employers are taking the drastic measure of implementing work-from-home strategies. But while there have been people working from home successfully for decades, this is a new reality for most, and with it comes new strategies and a whole different level of awareness.
That's especially true when it comes to video conferencing. When you were invited to participate in a video conference from your desk in an office, there was little to worry about. When that call starts to come in while you're working from home, it's a whole different ballgame.
You have to be aware not only of what you are or aren't wearing (offensive t-shirts probably not a good idea, but you can usually get away with more casual wear -- and even no pants if you're hyper aware of the camera and maybe don't get up and move around).
While it would be embarrassing enough for your coworkers, and possibly your supervisors, to see you in your skivvies, you'd be praying that's all that happened if you were "poor Jennifer."
Apparently, she forgot about the video element of her Zoom conference call. Work-from-home employees will often wander around during an audio conference call; it's a great time to stretch your legs and just get out from behind the desk for a bit. It's not recommended to do this during a video call, though.
For one, it's distracting to everyone else on the team when there's so much activity happening in one screen. That means all eyes are on you. Oh that also happened to "poor Jennifer," as she was the only one moving during her video conference call. Until she stopped that is.
We all heed nature's call at one time or another, but do not heed its call during a conference call. If you must, either excuse yourself briefly from the call or mute yourself at the very least. But please, please, please be aware of the camera on whatever device you're using to participate in the call.
Maybe don't set it on the floor so it perfectly frames you as you sit on your toilet. "Poor Jennifer," indeed. It's one thing to embarrass yourself socially or even online, but when it happens "at work," it can be even more mortifying.
Look, we're in uncharted territory here for a lot of people, and hopefully Jennifer's employer is forgiving as this was clearly a horrible, horrible mistake. Within seconds, the woman clearly figured out what she'd done (maybe she saw herself in all her seated glory on the feed) and shifted the angle.
"What happened?" said the woman leading the call, who'd missed the whole thing. But team solidarity had Jennifer's back, as no one told her. Instead, they urged her to carry on. Of course, now everyone knows what happened.
Honestly, it could have been much worse for "Poor Jennifer." Yes, this is humiliating, and yes it is now viral. But the video itself was luckily more tame than it obviously could have been. Will she ever live it down? Oh definitely not, and especially among those who know her. But did she provide a valuable public service -- as well as a much-needed laugh -- just when American needed it most?
She absolutely did. Some online were quick to point out that someone uploaded this video to the internet (probably not Jennifer) and left in the shoutout to her actual name, making them feel even worse for the poor woman. We're not going to embed the video itself, to cut her a bit of a break, but you know what's in it!
Honestly, you don't even need it to get the life lesson and appreciate her embarrassment. If you're still at all unclear what happened, the below reactions should help clarify things, including some love and (gently laughing) support from TV's Lois Lane, Elizabeth Tulloch.
Remember friends, always be aware of your surroundings and your person when working from home. Always!
As a long time student from home who successfully made it through undergrad with 0 poor Jennifer moments, a word of advice never take the laptop with you. Type "excuse me" & always mute your mic. Saves you when the cat tries to deafen the whole class with a meow while your afk... pic.twitter.com/nAOtcZA2ze