Delta's Giraffe Gaffe

There are no giraffes in Ghana

Jun 17, 2014
Outside Magazine

Anyone who has ever enjoyed a hot dog knows that ignorance is bliss, but when you have a Twitter account with hundreds of thousands of followers, the former is more likely to come to prominence. Yesterday, Delta Airlines found that out the hard way.

Playing in humid conditions in northeastern Brazil, Team USA finally managed to vanquish its World Cup nemesis, Ghana, in an exciting match that saw the boys in red, white, and blue go up 2-1 in the 86th minute after John Brooks's header. American "soccer" fans were ecstatic, as the Ghanian football squad, known as the Black Stars, had defeated the United States in each of the two previous World Cups.

Wishing to partake in the festivities, Delta Airlines posted a tweet depicting the score of the game with what it felt were two appropriate symbols of the competing nations: the Statue of Liberty for the United States and a giraffe at sunset for Ghana. 

Although Ghana does have sunsets, the country doesn't have any giraffes (at least not in the wild). Needless to say, Delta received significant backlash in the Twittersphere and beyond for its crude cultural stereotyping. One would expect one of the world's largest international airlines to be more discerning.

In fairness to Delta, the company has since removed the offending tweet and posted the following apology: "We're sorry for our choice of photo in our previous tweet. Best of luck to all teams."

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