On Sunday, Twitter was rampant with Appletiser’s recent faux pas, in which the soft drink company called a black model a “brunette.”
The original tweet was posted two weeks back on Wednesday May 27 as part of the Women Crush Wednesday hashtag campaign, which involves females posting images of their girl crush.
The tweet was seen by some as offensive and racist and raised question to Appletiser’s intended message.
Appletiser tweeted an apology on Sunday, stating:
“Sincere apologies for offending anyone with our reference to brunettes & blue eyes, it certainly was not the intention #proudlysouthafrican.”
Intended or not, the question remains: What were they trying to say and what does it have to do with their product?
Appletiser spokesperson Andrea Shuttleworth commented, “The post was simply to highlight friendship and fun. We didn’t realise it would be such a sensitive post.”
The company work closely together with TBWA Networks who are the creatives behind their social media posts; however, all posts are ultimately approved by the Appletiser.
Realising the power of social media, Shuttleworth added, “It was our mistake. We didn’t screen it properly. It really took us by surprise, because we didn’t think it would be misconstrued. This is the first time this has happened. We are happy to take the moral ground and apologise and learn from it. We will also be implementing more rigorous screening processes in future.”
— Appletiser ZA (@AppletiserZA) May 27, 2015
I'm sad coz #Appletiser is a signature drink for black weddings. That green bottle in a bucket on each table ????????????
— Jimi Hendrix 2.0 (@Bikomfident) June 7, 2015
But how was that #Appletiser tweet racist?? Someone make me understand.
— Mouse Mbatha (@MouseMbatha) June 7, 2015
This whole #Appletiser outrage is pathetic. If they had used a white brunette then there wud hve been outrage too. Ur offense is offensive.
— Kerryn (@_KerrynLloyd_) June 7, 2015