Uber Apologizes—And Offers an Explanation For—Its Insanely Racist Tweet on Twitter

Illustration for article titled Uber Apologizes—And Offers an Explanation For—Its Insanely Racist Tweet on Twitter
Photo: iStock

It seems like every time I turn around, Uber is in the news for all the wrong reasons. There’s the resignation of their head of HR over how discrimination complaints were being mishandled, various assault accusations, that whole #DeleteUber fiasco, and a bunch of other shit I don’t have the time to point out. Yet somehow, their latest faux pas might be their worst yet.

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On Monday, Uber’s official Twitter account had the following ugly exchange with user @realTheeCheney:

Illustration for article titled Uber Apologizes—And Offers an Explanation For—Its Insanely Racist Tweet on Twitter
Screenshot: Twitter
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Yikes.

And yes, that says “Nigger.”

But alas, all is not as it seems.

According to Mashable, apparently, the individual behind the @realTheeCheney account was feverishly trolling Uber on Twitter, thirsty for a bot reply.

This seems all the more likely when you look at the @realTheeCheney account, which consists of mostly MAGA trolling and screenshots of other Twitter users tricking brand accounts into tweeting racist replies. For example, if the @realTheeCheney account had a display name with the slur, then it changed it after receiving the reply from Uber, a bot reply from @Uber_Support quoting the display name might read as the deleted tweet screenshot above.

So essentially the MAGA Twitter troll pulled a bait and switch on an automated message.

But even if that’s the case, I’m gonna need Uber to be a bit more careful with its filters so completely avoidable situations like these don’t come up again in the future.

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In response to the incident, Uber offered the following statement:

“We’d like to sincerely apologize for the offensive tweet that was sent earlier,” they tweeted. “We’re investigating what happened to make sure it doesn’t happen again.”

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Not exactly confirmation that the situation is entirely resolved, but I guess we’ll all have to wait and see. Or shoot them a tweet and find out.

Menace to supremacy. Founder of Extraordinary Ideas and co-host and producer of The Extraordinary Negroes podcast. Impatiently waiting for ya'll to stop putting sugar in grits.

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DISCUSSION

A few questions...

Why can you change your name to ANY racial slur on Twitter (or any other social media for that matter)?

Why the hell do you have a bot running a customer facing customer service social media account? Did they not anticipate trolling? ON FUCKING TWITTER OF ALL PLACES???

Who the fuck thought that apology was going to be sufficient?