DiGiorno Pizza learned the dangers of social media first hand — after its Twitter account joined a conversation about domestic violence and misunderstood the meaning behind a trending hashtag — by unintentionally sending out an offensive joke tweet Tuesday afternoon.
Following the release of a video that clearly showed footballer Ray Rice's brutal domestic assault of then-fiancee Janay Palmer in an Atlantic City hotel elevator, other abused and battered women took to Twitter to share their own violent stories, using #WhyIStayed.
That is when the DiGiorno account tweeted, "#WhyIStayed You had pizza."
The person behind the account quickly realized their mistake and apologized, writing, "A million apologies. Did not read what the hashtag was about before posting."
We heard from many of you, and we know we disappointed you. We understand, and we apologize to everyone for this mistake.
— DiGiorno Pizza (@DiGiornoPizza) September 9, 2014
As angry tweeters fired back, DiGiorno then spent the entire day writing back individual responses on Twitter to the thousands who voiced their disgust thinking the brand would make light of something so horrible.
The pizza company's faux pas seems to have been forgiven by most, including MSNBC TV host Ronan Farrow, who retweeted the brand's apology after he wrote to them, "It's not delivery, it's domestic violence."
As a last ditch effort to clarify its unintentional goof, the brand offered up one final apology on Twitter Tuesday night:
"We heard from many of you, and we know we disappointed you. We understand, and we apologize to everyone for this mistake."