Burger King UK’s International Women’s Day tweets to announce they want to hire more women staffs have been withdrawn after massive social media backlash. The UK branch of the international burger chain recently deleted a tweet that they posted on March 8, 2021, that read, “Women belong in the Kitchen.” The tweet, that too on International Women’s Day, attracted a lot of criticism and eventually, the company ended up deleting the tweet on March 9, 2021, and issued an apology.
We decided to delete the original tweet after our apology. It was brought to our attention that there were abusive comments in the thread and we don’t want to leave the space open for that.— Burger King (@BurgerKingUK) March 8, 2021
The company said that they understand their initial tweet was wrong, and they are sorry. They further added that the idea was to attract people’s attention towards the unequal percentage of women chefs in professional kitchens. Burger King said they deleted the tweet to ensure there is no space for more abuse as there were many abusive comments. It said, “It was brought to our attention that there were abusive comments in the thread, and we don’t want to leave the space open for that.”
The ‘good intentions’ were buried in abuses
The tweet Burger King UK posted was the first tweet of a thread in which they talked about how women presence in the professional kitchen is only 20%. To help fill up the gap, they offer scholarships for women chefs to pursue their dream in the culinary arts.
However, many netizens did not read the thread, and as screenshots of only the first tweet in the thread started to make rounds, the actual intentions of the company were buried in piles of abuses thrown towards them.
The hate continues
It looks like Burger King UK will not get rid of hate anytime soon. The apology the company posted attracted more criticism as many netizens felt that they were throwing the critics under the bus for their decision to delete the tweet.
Passing the blame onto the comments after posting a sexist tweet that promotes abusive commentary.— TabiiKat (@kat_tabii) March 9, 2021
I like how they deleted the original tweet because of the ‘abusive comments’ and not because burger king did an oopsie pic.twitter.com/Rl4mbg3GnY— Jae | 19 | he/they (@generaljae_) March 9, 2021
Yeah you were the one who was MOST abusive— 陽春理樹 (@riki7119) March 9, 2021
Don’t blame others mate
It’s all your fault https://t.co/lMDoCVpLoR
Wait so you only deleted because of that but not because what you tweeted was distasteful? That’s a pitiful non apology. https://t.co/Ch7y9NuD2y— Pat Orr (@Powerage1986) March 9, 2021
There was comparisons of the tweet from the past as well.
People started posting images of the front-page ads of the company in newspapers and asked if they are going to take back the copies of newspapers that have already been circulated.
Are you rounding up copies of all the print advertisements too? It is simply too late … the train has left the station my friend. How about this, start by creating an environment where people truly understand that this is never okay. This is not a strategy, this is just sad. pic.twitter.com/OdR6dry1iV— Jon Falk (@jonRfalk) March 8, 2021
Or the big text in the instagram post? Or the big text in the New York Times ad? pic.twitter.com/DBncU4XTmV— Aiden Ocelot (@squidninja120) March 8, 2021
Some pointed out the company did not delete it from their Instagram account.
Oh yes. The company cares a lot since this is still on Instagram. 🙄 pic.twitter.com/G8tEEdDPw5— Pasta🍝 (@pastaraviolis) March 9, 2021
There was a time when PR experts believed that even bad publicity is good. Some studies also suggest that there is a likelihood that sales may increase after receiving a backlash. However, some experts have started to believe that it is not true anymore. In today’s time, people research before making purchases and problematic past may result in scepticism in making a purchase.