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15 miners fired for “Harlem Shake” video

Barminco slammed the “Harlem Shake” video as a breach of the company’s “core values of safety, integrity and excellence.”


Michelle Jaworski


Turns out making a “Harlem Shake” video at your place of work, even while you’re on break, can get you fired.

Up to 15 miners found this out the hard way after they made a “Harlem Shake” video at the Agnew Gold Mine last week and were relieved of their duties soon after.

This comes just days after the Federal Aviation Administration launched an investigation into a Harlem Shake video made by a group of Colorado College students mid-flight from Colorado Springs, Colo., to San Diego.

The fired employees included the miners seen in the video as well as some who watched the performance nearby, one of the workers, who didn’t want to be identified, told The West Australian.

The unnamed worker also accused Barminco, the company that owns a number of mines throughout Australia and Africa (including Agnew) of being harsh. They were only “having a bit of fun,” the worker explained.

But for Barminco, the viral stunt was a safety issue.

According to a dismissal letter obtained by The West Australian, Barminco slammed the “Harlem Shake” video as a breach of the company’s “core values of safety, integrity and excellence.”

It also banned the miners for life, stating that Barminco would not allow the workers involved with the video “to be subcontracted by Barminco at any site domestically and globally.”

One of the breaches included the failure of miners to wear safety equipment, but according to the unnamed worker, some of the video’s participants removed their shirts to ensure that the Barminco name and logo didn’t appear in the video.

The workers appear to be wearing safety helmets, lamps, and glasses, and according to report, the workers had oxygen onhand.

Some of the workers are considering legal action to get their jobs back. A Facebook page was launched in support of the miners reaction has been mixed.

Thousands of “Harlem Shake” videos are uploaded to YouTube everyday. Since it erupted online about a month ago, it has resulted in suspension for a high school classroom, forced a hockey team to forfeit a playoff game, and got a college hockey team suspended. A number of Harlem Shake protests are springing up in the Middle East.

The Harlem Shake craze is showing no signs of stopping. After Billboard decided to include YouTube views in its formula, “Harlem Shake” shot to the top of the Billboard Hot 100. It is currently the No. 2 song on the ARIA Singles Chart.

Photo via NewBestNews/YouTube

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