UPDATED 12/22 – In a written statement. Sacco apologized “for being insensitive to this crisis — which does not discriminate by race, gender or sexual orientation, but which terrifies us all uniformly — and to the millions of people living with the virus, I am ashamed.”
She added that she is a native of South Africa and was upset that she had hurt so many people there.
“I am very sorry for the pain I caused,” she wrote.
Media company IAC “parted ways” Saturday with Sacco after the tweet, which read: “Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDS. Just kidding. I’m white!”
UPDATED: IAC said Saturday that it has “parted ways” with PR director Justine Sacco, a day after a racist tweet from her account went viral.
The tweet, “Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDS. Just kidding. I’m white!” sparked outcry online and spurred a hashtag that trended on Twitter.
“The offensive comment does not reflect the views and values of IAC. We take this issue very seriously, and we have parted ways with the employee in question,” the company said in an e-mail Saturday.
“There is no excuse for the hateful statements that have been made and we condemn them unequivocally. We hope, however, that time and action, and the forgiving human spirit, will not result in the wholesale condemnation of an individual who we have otherwise known to be a decent person at core,” the statement said.
Sacco could not be reached for comment.
Wow – I mean really? This has to be one of the craziest things I’ve seen in 2013.
The communications director for IAC, which represents brands like OKCupid, About.com, Match.com, Vimeo amongst countless others is in BIG trouble — after publicly tweeting a racist “joke” that was not very…dare I say… funny.
“Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDS. Just kidding. I’m white!” Justine Sacco tweeted Friday. Then she boarded a flight from London to Africa and all hell broke lose on Twitter as her tweet circulated way beyond the few hundred followers she had and became news.Sacco’s father is a wealthy South Africa businessman.
The offending tweet later disappeared, and as you might imagine it was a little bit too late.
“This is an outrageous, offensive comment that does not reflect the views and values of IAC,” said a rep for the company. Noting it had been unable to reach the in-flight “employee in question,” the statement continued, “This is a very serious matter and we are taking appropriate action.”
Meanwhile, outrage over what many dubbed “worst tweet of the year” piled up, with one vengeful Twitter user publishing Sacco’s cell phone number online.
“She gon get that message I left,” Twitter user illmami wrote.