The woman whose smiling face became the symbol of the troubled healthcare.gov website spoke exclusively with ABC news, saying she has been bullied as a result of the Internet fury over her removal from the site.
She also told ABC News that she was never compensated for the use of her image.
Nicknamed “Glitch Girl,” the woman, who asked to be identified only as Adriana, stirred curiosity among media who scrambled to try to identify her after the site, which went live on Oct. 1, was immediately slowed by technical problems and visitors found themselves endlessly staring at her on their frozen computer screens.
Frustrated users unleashed their ire on the mystery woman, venting on Twitter and other social media.
“The #obamacare girl got the worst photo shoot gig since Joey did the STD poster on Friends,” tweeted @RONCOULTER, referring to the sitcom character’s shock when he discovered that his modeling picture had been used in a campaign about venereal disease.
The government has replaced Adriana with four chunky icons that represent ways to sign up for the new mandatory health insurance. Creative critics have suggested other stand-ins, including the ghoulish Freddy Krueger character from the film series “A Nightmare on Elm Street” or Norwegian artist Edvard Munch’s “The Scream.”