‘Being funny not our strong suit’: SEDUCTION visa joke by German Foreign Office causes Twitter backlash & apology
Germany’s reputation for comedy is as well-known as Ireland’s reputation for sobriety. Still, the country’s Foreign Office tried its hand at humor on Thursday, contributing to the trending hashtag ‘#SeduceSomeoneInFourWords.’
“Your visa got approved” was the FO’s contribution, but commenters on Twitter were unimpressed.
“This is not funny!” one man tweeted. “There are thousands of people who’re waiting for their visas to get approved in order to come and get treatment, study etc. that’s simply the real face of you guys!”
If your visa application process did not make people feel less than human, it might have been funny. But it does. So this is gloating in your discretionary power, laughing at people who are subjectted to it. Not cool, and quite out of touch.— Galma Akdeniz (@GalmaAkdeniz) January 17, 2020
You have one the worst and most bureaucracic embassies in Khartoum, Sudan.I applied for a national visa since August 2019 and until now there's no response and I've postponed my language courses in L. A. N. E. S, Duisburg for several times.Why are you doing this?!— Dr. Hem!xY™️ (@Hemixy) January 16, 2020
German humor is beyond most people. pic.twitter.com/zlzlt9HWIY— Giovanni Lido (@Giovanni_Lido) January 16, 2020
Though other commenters did find the tweet funny, the FO backed off and deleted it, posting an explanation later on Thursday night. “Being funny is apparently not always our strong suit,” the office account tweeted. “We deleted the tweet below and apologize to all who were offended by this. We know the visa process is complex, and visa decisions can deeply affect peoples’ lives. Our colleagues take these decisions very seriously.”
Being funny is apparently not always our strong suit. We deleted the tweet below and apologize to all who were offended by this. We know the visa process is complex, and visa decisions can deeply affect peoples‘ lives. Our colleagues take these decisions very seriously. pic.twitter.com/VP7dmH6l05— GermanForeignOffice (@GermanyDiplo) January 16, 2020
You shouldn't apologise, the joke is actually good. Sehr gut. 😅— Iván Alfonso Pizarro Montenegro (@pizarroia) January 16, 2020
It was hilarious. But I know humor isn't easy for Germans. pic.twitter.com/HGrOyl9ViO— Cicero (@MarcusCicero63) January 16, 2020
This in turn saw some Twitter backlash, with critics suggesting people needed to “chill a little” and not be “too uptight.”
Why now? This was the most hilarious shit I’ve seen in a minute. 😂😂😂😂😂. People need to chill a little.— Francis Gaitho (@Kenyafootball) January 17, 2020
Whatever about the office’s attempt at humor, at least they used the correct number of words. Belgium’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs tweeted five: “Some beer, chocolate & waffles.” France’s Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs played to a national stereotype and stuck to: "Hi, I’m French.”
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