KANSAS CITY, Missouri - An animated video became a YouTube sensation, but put a Best Buy employee in hot water with his employer.
On Tuesday, the retail giant released a statement, saying the popular videos will not cost Brian Maupin his job. The 25-year-old graphic art student is still weighing his options.
The videos are parodies of rival cellphone carriers, told through mock conversations between a salesman and customer. One of the clips already has more than 3 million views on YouTube.
When he first posted the animated video, Maupin said he would have been happy with 100 hits. However, it has struck an online nerve.
“At its core, it’s kind of a commentary on how people are loyal to their brands even if they get burned,” said Maupin.
Last week, we told you the videos caught the attention of Best Buy . The employee was suspended and expected to lose his job.
Several less popular videos made by Maupin mentioned the retail giant by name. He immediately removed those from the site, but refused to take down the videos that had exploded in popularity.
It appeared the fight would cost Maupin his job. Now, he said the company seems to have “pulled a 180.”
“I don’t know if it’s because the media got involved or maybe because they took a step back and saw that it was just a funny thing not intended to be mean,” said Maupin.
A statement released by Best Buy said:
“We have completed our investigation into the videos created and posted by Brian Maupin, the aspiring filmmaker and Best Buy employee. This is an important situation for us because it involved balancing our social media guidelines with a commitment to creating a supportive environment for our employees. It's important to note that our investigation involved three videos that were posted in late June because they were openly disparaging of our employees, our customers and our vendor partners. Our investigation is over, and these videos are no longer on the web. Contrary to rumors, Brian has not been fired and is scheduled to return to his job at Best Buy this Friday.”
However, Maupin said he is not sure if he will put on the blue shirt and punch in again at the Independence store. Because of what transpired, he said it could be an awkward situation.
On his Twitter page, he told followers , “At this point, I haven’t decided if it would be appropriate to return.”
Instead, he is weighing his options with some other job possibilities. If nothing else, the videos got him recognized in the animated video world.
Copyright 2010 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
Missouri Neighborhood News
Raytown city officials received a letter on Tuesday from the company saying they have withdrawn their application to build a Neighborhood Market in the downtown area.