Everybody loves a good meme, but New Zealand police have been forced to apologise after tweeting one that seemingly made light of the recent spate of road fatalities.
After a weekend that saw nine people die on New Zealand roads, a tweet went up on the NZ police Twitter account featuring a gif of Steve Carrell from the TV show The Office.
“When we have to tell someone their family member has died in a crash,” was the caption that sat alongside it.
Needless to say, the tweet fell completely flat, with the Twitterverse slamming it as being tone deaf and completely insensitive.
Oh my god, what is wrong with the poster? Apologies mean little after such a tone-deaf remark. Someone needs to be fired. Disgraceful— Dalton Boon (@Lexiconic_Rigor) October 9, 2017
Staggering that anyone even considered tweeting that, let alone searched for the meme, drafted the tweet & then shared with the world!— Scott Warren (@scott___warren) October 9, 2017
OK, it's only Monday, but this tweet by NZ Police already takes the booby prize for social media fail of the week. Tone-deaf. pic.twitter.com/w4xG3NAyPL— Nik Dirga (@nikdirga) October 9, 2017
The tweet was then deleted, with New Zealand police issuing an apology.
We apologise for the recent road safety tweet. We quickly realised it was wrong & insensitive & it was immediately deleted. Thx for feedback— New Zealand Police (@nzpolice) October 9, 2017
However some have commended the NZ police - who have made headlines around the world in the past with their savvy social media strategy - for apologising.
I mean, what was wrong about it? They have to tell people everyday their loved ones are dead and it is the worst duty any cop can have.— Chris Tiefel (@TIeflen) October 9, 2017
You got it wrong this time, but be more proud of the times you've got it right, and it's been often. (e.g dancing cops / rail safety vids).— Dan Burt (@daniamiam) October 9, 2017