Two Huawei Technologies employees are being punished by the company after a New Year's tweet went wrong. The employees sent the holiday greeting from Huawei's official Twitter account using an iPhone, according to a company memo obtained by Reuters.
The tweet that sparked the controversy wished Huawei followers a "Happy #2019," a message which ended with a note that said it was sent "via Twitter for iPhone." While the tweet was quickly deleted, screenshots of the error surfaced on social media.
In an internal Huawei memo dated Thursday, Chen Lifang, corporate senior vice president and director of the board, said, "the incident caused damage to the Huawei brand," Reuters reported.
According to the memo, the iPhone tweet came when Huawei's outsourced social media management handler Sapient had VPN problems on a desktop computer and used an iPhone with a roaming SIM card to send the message at midnight. Twitter is blocked in China on a heavily censored internet, requiring users to gain access to the social media platform with a VPN connection.
As a result of the tweet, the company demoted the two employees responsible for the error by one rank and reduced their monthly salaries by 5,000 yuan (approximately $728.87 USD). This was in addition to freezing the pay of Huawei's digital marketing director's pay for 12 months, the news outlet said.
Huawei manufactures the P-series handset that is a rival of Apple's iPhones.
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