Humor is all about knowing your audience, and 21-year-old Brit Rayhan Qadar apparently didn't really know his. The stockbroker made an ill-advised "joke" on Twitter Monday morning and lost his job over it. The offending tweet (his account is now private, CNET notes): "Think I just hit a cyclist. But Im late for work so had to drive off lol." The Twitter-sphere was immediately incensed, believing Qadar was serious. What was serious: the repercussions. His employer, Hargreaves Lansdown, promptly fired him and issued a statement that reads in part, "One of our employees has failed to conduct themselves to the standards we expect of our staff. We find these online comments totally unacceptable." The Guardian notes local police are now investigating to make sure there was, in fact, no hit-and-run.
While some Twitter users had called for his head (tweeted one: "hopefully you won't have a job to get to by the end of the day, enjoy going to court #Scum"), others say his employer's move went too far, with one tweeter dubbing it a "total over-reaction from the righteous Twitter Nazis over a joke tweet," reports the Daily Mail. As for Qadar, he says the only true part of the tweet was that he was late for work. "I am 100% sorry," he tells the Bristol Evening Post. "It was a joke gone bad. I didn't think that would happen." Before shifting his account to private, he reportedly shared another percent: "99% of the things I tweet is nonsense." (He's certainly not the first person to be fired over a Facebook or Twitter post: see here, here, and here.)