Man ‘injured’ after viral TikTok video in Coles Melbourne

The man says he was “traumatized” after seeing a viral video of himself at the grocery store where he had no idea he was being filmed.

At first glance, this TikTok posted by user Rustam Raziev might seem like nothing more than a touching random act of kindness.

The video shows a man in a gray jacket waiting to pay for his groceries at the Coles checkout in Melbourne before a stranger bursts in and stealthily pays for the lot.

The video, which has over six million views, was captioned, “My mission? Be yourself Helping others. Be the best version of yourself.”

While this seems like a sweet gesture, it had the exact opposite effect on the man in the video.

Esa, who did not want his full name to be published, said ABC that he had no idea he was being filmed and only found out when he saw a video posted online.

He didn’t even realize that his roughly $33 groceries were paid for by a stranger, let alone being filmed.

When he went to pay, the cashier told him that everything was paid for, and when Esa asked why, he simply said: “It’s all done.”

Esa was understandably confused, but said he thought the supermarket was running some sort of special promotion.

It wasn’t until a few weeks later when his friends showed him a TikTok video that he realized what had really happened.

“I checked (it) and saw my video, which really scared and upset me,” he told ABC.

“I don’t want to be famous, I don’t want people to know about me… and he did that too without my consent. I wasn’t happy about it.”

Esa came to Australia in 2001 from Afghanistan as an asylum seeker and attaches great importance to his privacy, so much so that he never even posts a video of himself on his personal social networks.

He said he felt “embarrassed, guilty, a little shocked and sad” after watching the video, stating that it made him look like a “desperate person who needs help”.

“I have friends and family all over the world, they called me and said: “Oh, you need help” and “What happened to you? Someone is paying for your food.” I was a little injured,” he said.

Looking at the comments on the video, it’s clear why Esa feels this way.

“It looks like he is going through something, I feel bad,” said one person.

Other people said it looked like Esa was trying not to cry in the video, while others claimed he “probably really needed” a kind gesture.

“He obviously needed it, he couldn’t even turn around because you could see how he was holding back his emotions,” another person said.

One even stated, “I think you saved that man.”

This isn’t the first time these “random kindness videos” have backfired: One Melbourne woman admitted she felt “dehumanized” after seeing herself in a video like this.

Harrison Pavluk uploaded a video of himself last month. TikTok gives Melbourne woman Marie a bouquet of flowers.

The caption for the video, which has been viewed over 58 million times, read: “Hope this made her day better.”

In the 19-second video, Marie is seen drinking coffee in a Melbourne food court.

Unbeknownst to her, a couple of young people nearby are filming Tik Toker coming up and asking her to hold flowers for him.

He puts on a jacket and backpack and tells her “have a nice day”.

It was supposed to be a random act of kindness, but Marie says she doesn’t need flowers and certainly doesn’t need the attention of tens of millions of people around the world.

Speaking to ABC Radio Melbourne’s Virginia Trioli, Marie says she feels “dehumanized” and that she challenges the notion that a random act of kindness was random at all.

“A guy came up and very politely asked if I would hold these flowers for him, which I did,” Marie explained.

“And, you know, I had a little chat about who was the lucky one, blah blah. And in general, he said: “Oh, someone very special.”

“And then he really just, you know, put on his backpack and jacket and just walked away.”

Footage that the 22-year-old shared with his 3.2 million followers has gone viral. daily mail which published a story that Marie said misrepresented her as a lonely and sad woman.

“They must have seen the movie and got this picture of me looking, well, supposedly crying, but it was just a terrible expression. And I just got really offended.

“He interrupted my quiet time, filmed and uploaded the video without my consent, turning it into something it wasn’t, and I feel like he’s making quite a lot of money from it.”

Originally published as Man ‘injured’ after appearing on viral Australian TikTok