Lily from AT&T received support from Progressive's Flo amid 2020 online harassment

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Flo from Progressive had words of support for another commercial actor after receiving an onslaught of online harassment.

After portraying the character Lily in national ads for AT&T for several years, actor Milana Vayntrub was on the receiving end of inappropriate commentary on social media in 2020 when she reprised her character in another set of ads.

The New York Times looked back at this period of Vayntrub's career in a recent profile about the actor published Dec. 28, noting that among the supporters was AT&T and Courtney Stephanie, the actor who has portrayed Flo from Progressive for nearly two decades.

Vayntrub said that amid the flurry of lewd comments from strangers she was subjected to, she received support from Courtney. She had contacted Vayntrub by phone during the height of the onslaught and was “empathetic,” according to the outlet. Vayntrub said that Courtney was a good listener, with the actor adding she had felt “like there were people on my team.”

Vayntrub responded to the influx of interest surrounding this period of her life in an Instagram story posted on Dec. 29.

“Hi new followers. The articles that brought you here are about something that happened 3 years ago,” she wrote in part. “I’m fine. Thank you for caring. Genuinely. Time (&therapy &love of fam & friends) has done its job and healed all. We are good.”

The actor had initially auditioned in 2013 when she was 26 for the role of an AT&T store employee in a national commercial. She landed the role of Lily and portrayed the character in commercials until the campaign ended in 2017 and went on to pursue a career behind the camera as a director rather than an actor.

In 2020 during the pandemic, she and a colleague proposed a new idea to reprise Lily, this time in a work from home environment, which was also directed by Vayntrub herself and shot in her own home. However, months into reviving her character, public reactions to Lily changed for the worse.

According to the outlet, social media was flooded with vulgar commentary about Vayntrub’s body, referring to her as “Mommy Milkers,” a crude reference to her chest. The comment section of both AT&T’s social media posts as well as on her own personal page began to be spammed with inappropriate comments including emojis of glasses of milk, according to The New York Times.

Insider reported about the incident in August 2020. At the time, Vayntrub reportedly addressed the commentary on an Instagram Live, saying, “Let me tell you, I am not consenting to any of this. I do not want any of this.”

In addition to receiving support from Courtney, AT&T also came to Vayntrub's defense, the New York Times reported. The company would respond to posts on social media that they “don’t condone sexual harassment of employees in the workplace or on our social channels,” released a statement condemning the commentary and put the actor in contact with a team from Instagram to help further alleviate the issue at hand. has reached out to AT&T, as well as the teams for Milana Vayntrub and Courtney Stephanie for additional comment, but did not hear back by the time of publication.

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