After Emily Clow applied for a marketing position at an Austin-based business, the company asked for additional application materials. But rather than getting hired, the 24-year-old ended up getting shamed. Clow had shared her social media accounts with Kickass Masterminds, a firm that promises to help entrepreneurs grow their businesses, and was shocked when she saw a photo of herself on one of the company's Instagram stories. BuzzFeed has a screenshot of the now-disappeared post, which was overlaid with the words, "PSA ... do not share your social media with a potential employer if this is the kind of content on it. I am looking for a professional marketer - not a bikini model. Go on with your bad self and do whatever in private. But this is not doing you any favors in finding a professional job." Clow posted about the incident, and backlash was swift.
"i was objectified earlier today by a company because of a picture of me in a bikini. they claimed it made me an 'unprofessional.' they screenshot the photo, posted it on their insta story and called me out," she tweeted. "i am still baffled that the company handled it in such a manner." Her tweet quickly went viral, with many supportive replies (including at least a couple offering to help her find a different job), and the company—which had blocked Clow on Instagram after she asked multiple times for her photo to be taken down—ultimately went dark; its Instagram account is now private and its website, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook pages were taken down. The founder and CEO tells the BBC this was done due to threats and harassment. (A YouTube page was, at least as of this posting, still up.) One sample Twitter reaction: "This is so infuriating, sexist, and ridiculous. Theyd [sic] never do this to a shirtless male who applied." (Read more sexism stories.)