A young woman who went “viral” after she shared a clip of her being kicked off the gym equipment by an entitled mom has admitted it was all made up.
The video shows 21-year-old Mikaela Laws working out on the shoulder press machine before being rudely interrupted by another member of the gym.
She demanded that Mikaela leave the machine because she “pays a membership” and needs to go home to her children – leading thousands to dismiss the mother as “entitled,” “embarrassing,” and a “Karen.”
Mikaela, who is from Utah in the US, joked that she will “never go to a public gym again” after the tense confrontation.
The 21-year-old was training when the woman approached her and asked how many sets she had left, to which Mikaela replied that she had two.
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Mikaela Laws (pictured), 21, has admitted to faking a viral video of a tense gym exchange, which she says was made to prove not everything on social media is real
She then kissed as if the mother had returned 60 seconds later to ask her when she would be ready.
But it was all staged.
Mikaela said she wanted to see if a confrontational video would go viral, and it did. It has been seen more than 12 million times since April 30.
The young woman defended the lie, which led to thousands of people criticizing both “the mother” and Mikaela.
“I know several creators who fake videos for likes and attention because they know they’re going viral and you’d never know because they’re really good actors,” she said.
“I’m a terrible actor, that was very clear in that video. If I had been a passive person I might have reacted a bit more naturally, but since I am not a passive person it came across as completely fake.’
In the video, the “mommy” said she was too busy to wait for the machine.
“It’s just really annoying because I’m paying for a membership here and I’ve been waiting like all the time I’ve been here,” the mother complained before calling Mikaela’s actions “annoying.”
‘I don’t have much time, I have children at home. All I have to do is jump on this machine and get it done. Can you please just get out so I can have it?’
Mikaela then “promised” the woman that she would only be “30 seconds longer” and that the machine would be free.
The 21-year-old said she’s received vicious comments from vicious trolls since she went viral and said she posted the fake video in hopes it reminds people that not everything they see on social media is real.
“My point, and my message, was that news and social media tend to push the bad, and (almost always) totally the bad, because drama is so easily consumed,” Mikaela told FEMAIL.
No wonder people are so depressed now and have a terrible habit of comparing themselves to everything online. People can’t even tell the difference between something fake and reality anymore.’
While some were skeptical the screenplay was real, others quickly believed it.
Mikaela Laws attracted millions of views with her staged clip of a woman demanding she leave the shoulder press because she ‘pays for a membership’ and has to go home to her kids
Mikaela was bombarded with comments ranging from people bashing the “mom” to others commenting on her “disrespectful” gym etiquette and even some trolls making cruel jokes about her appearance.
“People went absolutely wild, wild, in my comment section and not even at me but at each other,” the gym-goer said in a follow-up video.
“I don’t tend to get offended by what strangers say about me, but I will specifically say with this video that I was called fat, I was called stupid, I was given all these names that had nothing to do with the actual screenplay. ‘
Mikaela was surprised but not shocked that her one “negative” video went viral, while the clips she posts that “spread positivity” only get a few thousand views.
“My point, and my message, was that news and social media tend to push the bad, and (almost always) completely the bad, because drama is so easily consumed,” Mikaela told FEMAIL
“(That) says a lot about the internet… I hope this opened eyes a little bit to the fact that there’s a reason why these videos are going viral and that so much of social media isn’t reality in any way,” said she.
“It’s just pieces of reality and sometimes it’s just complete BS. It’s very hard to tell the difference.”
She said she hopes the video shows people that even though there is so much positive content on social media, it’s the negative that gets “pushed out.”
“It’s really hard to scroll through a platform that’s mostly fake and mostly negative and then you start playing the comparison game with other people,” she said.
“Next time you start comparing yourself, even in a positive way, to people on social media, keep in mind that there is a negativity bias and there is a lot of fake. We all know this, but this was a way to prove it.’