Facebook ‘regrets’ adding confetti and balloons to Indonesia earthquake posts

Facebook ‘regrets’ adding confetti and balloons to Indonesia earthquake posts

Image: ALEX WONG/getty When your reach is global, it's perhaps difficult not to inadvertently stick your fingers in a few places they don't belong — especially if you happen to be rocking the blithe self-assurance of one Mark Zuckerberg. When a natural disaster strikes, people often turn to Facebook to express sympathy and concern for those caught in Mother Nature's unforgiving wake. That's right, when people posted to Facebook in Indonesian that they hoped victims of the quake would survive the ordeal, Facebook showered their posts with balloons and confetti. So how does something this bonkers happen? Well, it turns out that the oft-touted Menlo Park artificial intelligence still has some learning to do. "'Congrats' in Indonesian is 'selamat'," wrote Herman Saksono on Twitter after noticing this, shall we say, discrepancy. After the 6.9 magnitude earthquake in Lombok, Facebook users wrote 'I hope people will survive'. “Congrats” in Indonesian is “selamat”. Selamat also means “to survive.” After the 6.9 magnitude earthquake in Lombok, Facebook users wrote “I hope people will survive”. Then Facebook highlighted the word “selamat” and throw some balloons and confetti.

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Gulp.
Gulp.

When your reach is global, it’s perhaps difficult not to inadvertently stick your fingers in a few places they don’t belong — especially if you happen to be rocking the blithe self-assurance of one Mark Zuckerberg.

When a natural disaster strikes, people often turn to Facebook to express sympathy and concern for those caught in Mother Nature’s unforgiving wake. And, at least in the case of the Sunday earthquake in Indonesia that has so far claimed the lives of over 300 people, Facebook responded by treating that concern as a cause for celebration.

That’s right, when people posted to Facebook in Indonesian that they hoped victims of the quake would survive the ordeal, Facebook showered their posts with balloons and confetti. Balloons. And confetti.

So how does something this bonkers happen? Well, it turns out that the oft-touted Menlo Park artificial intelligence still has some learning to do.

“‘Congrats’ in Indonesian is ‘selamat’,” wrote Herman Saksono on Twitter after noticing this, shall…

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