In the 21st century, it doesn’t matter if you are a speaker, politician, sportsman, or just a neighbor, a bad social media post can seriously affect your life.
A footballer learned this very quickly when a photo of her posing in the ‘slant-eyed’ gesture was posted on Twitter, which was considered highly racist.
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Italian defender Cecilia Salvai was seen posing with a training cone on her head and her eyes pressed to the sides with her finger. This “slanted-eyed” gesture is a racist way of portraying Asians and is frowned upon.
The photo was posted on Juventus Women’s Twitter account and remained there for almost 20 minutes, before the football club realized their mistake and deleted the tweet.
Soon after, an apology was tweeted from the same account. “We sincerely apologize that our tweet, which was not meant to cause controversy or have racial overtones, may have offended anyone. Juventus have always been against racism and discrimination,” the tweet reads.
We sincerely apologize that our tweet, which was not intended to cause controversy or have racial overtones, may have offended anyone. Juventus have always been against racism and discrimination. #DifferencesMakeTheDifference
– Juventus Women (@JuventusFCWomen) August 5, 2021
However, the damage was already done. Twitter users lambasted the football club for failing to notice the inappropriateness of the tweet and photo.
It was “not a question of provoking controversy”. Phew. What a failure on the part of the social media team. By the athlete, by the photographer, by everyone who saw this and thought it was ok https://t.co/ePMQgPR4BM
– Soledad O’Brien (@soledadobrien) August 6, 2021
So what exactly was the intention? The social media team for @JuventusFCWomen really approved of a very offensive tweet and didn’t think for once that he was screaming racism? The clue is in the pose, the use of props and the legend! What a total shame. https://t.co/AcC9GCOKyg
– Pooj (@ Pooj__10) August 6, 2021