‘Selfie’ Triggers Hot Responses

Maria Kang is under fire in social media circles for posting a revealing picture of herself in revealing workout clothes with her three sons, all under 4 years old. In the picture are the words: “What’s your excuse?” implying that if she has time to workout then others can make time as well. The photo went viral, attracting 16,000 views and 12,000 comments.

Click on the following link to see the picture, which serves as Kang’s profile picture on her Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/MariaMKang.

Kang’s intention was motivational and she admits that she did receive lots of positive support for the picture. She told CNN that the ratio of positive to negative comments are 7:1.

However, with every post/picture/comment that sparks a little controversy, the backlash is huge, and Kang received her share of it. The comments range from Kang being a bully, obnoxious and a show-off to her being a bad mother and neglecting her children to get into shape.

On Sept 25, Kang re-posted the picture accompanied by her version of an “apology,” which included these two paragraphs:

“I’m sorry you took an image and resonated with it in such a negative way. I won’t go into details that I struggled with my genetics, had an eating disorder, work full time owning two business’, have no nanny, am not naturally skinny and do not work as a personal trainer. I won’t even mention how I didn’t give into cravings for ice cream, french fries or chocolate while pregnant or use my growing belly as an excuse to be inactive.

What I WILL say is this. What you interpret is not MY fault. It’s Yours. The first step in owning your life, your body and your destiny is to OWN the thoughts that come out of your own head. I didn’t create them. You created them. So if you want to continue ‘hating’ this image, get used to hating many other things for the rest of your life. You can either blame, complain or obtain a new level of thought by challenging the negative words that come out of your own brain.”

To view the entire post, click on the following link: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=649761945054764&set=a.362645870433041.90996.284697751561187&type=1&theater

Her “apology” was met by positive feedback, with many people calling her an inspiration and stating that she doesn’t need to apologize for living a healthy and fit lifestyle.

What do you think of this picture? Are people are too sensitive to posts like these? Do you think Kang needed to defend herself? What are your thoughts on her apology? If you were Kang, how would you attempt to fix your reputation after this social media storm?

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5 Responses to ‘Selfie’ Triggers Hot Responses

  1. Ashley Provenzano says:

    Just looking at the picture, I personally probably wouldn’t have been so bothered by it, but after reading some of the other comments left by other Facebook users, I can see why people were upset.

    As for her “apology,” it didn’t seem like one at all to me. In all reality, I am more upset at her “apology” than the post. It seems very defensive and attack like. She should not stoop down to the level of the people who are harassing her. She should have either not said anything about it and let it blow over as all things eventually do, or say something much more neutral and less anger provoking.

  2. Hailey Paquette says:

    I think her word choice on the photo is the problem. She obviously has good intentions and is mainly trying to motivate people to stop making excuses for not exercising. The problem is in the delivery: if she would have said something a bit less antagonistic than “What’s your excuse,” I think she would have had fewer negative responses.

  3. Katherine Becerra says:

    I don’t think Kang posted the picture with bad intentions or with the thought that it would go viral. There will always be people who disagree with a post and some that might be offended. Kang’s apology is more of a rebuttal than a genuine apology. I think it would have served her better to issue an apology that acknowledged that her post offended some people and that she could have gotten her message across using different words. I saw her on the Bethenny talk show, and she came across as very defensive. I don’t see a huge issue with her picture, and even with all the backlash, she has fans. Maybe after all this publicity she will be the interest’s newest fitness guru. We will see.

  4. Maja Cakarun says:

    Thank you Charlotte, I really liked your blog. Although I’m not in favor of self promotion in this way, I must say that Maria did a good job in regards to personal PR and increasing awareness of importance of exercise and a healthy life. And if you have no budget for your message, social media is the best channel to choose. So, I believe that her goal is accomplished. Wonder what could be her next step.

  5. Marlee Bever says:

    I actually saw this picture on my newsfeed last week. I can see why people may have viewed her picture as offensive and inappropriate, however at the same time, I think that people will always be sensitive to posts like this. I think that it was a good thing that Kang defended herself but I don’t think she had to apologize because she did not do anything wrong.

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