Spanish esports organization Vodafone Giants have come under fire after posting what appears to be a blatantly racist joke on their official Twitter page.
On June 3, the official Vodafone Giants Twitter account posed the question “Qué es una luciérnaga negra?” (‘What is a black firefly?’).
This joke tweet went unanswered for a few hours, leaving fans confused, even speculating that the account had been hacked or the post had been sent in error.
Around two hours later however, they followed up their initial Tweet with the answer: “Una luciernigga” – substituting ‘naga’ for the racial slur.
Making matters worse, the post also included a seemingly random GIF of a black man, naked save for his underwear, rollerblading.
One fan replied that it was a “good thing we’re in Spain, because they would (crack) down on this spectacularly anywhere else”.
The Giants Twitter account responded, stating: “I thought about it, but the joke was worth the risk. I’m sure @shanksfgc‘s not offended (Kappa).”
Joan ‘Shanks’ Namay is a fighting game player for Giants.
Vodafone Esports also replied to the post in question, after a fan asked ‘What does one need to study to be Giant’s (community manager)?, stating: “Nothing, don’t you see?”
The tweets were later deleted, but had been visible for a number of hours on their official Twitter feed.
After deleting the post, Giants posted another, more innocuous joke, and apologized:
“We changed the joke this Monday and apologize to all the people who may have been offended by the (joke) published this morning. Sorry for any offense caused.”
Cambiamos de chiste este lunes y pedimos perdón a todas las personas que se hayan podido sentir ofendidas por el publicado esta mañana. Disculpad las molestias ocasionadas.
— Vodafone Giants (@GiantsGaming) June 3, 2019
Giants field teams in CS:GO, League of Legends, Rainbow Six, Call of Duty, Fortnite Battle Royale, Hearthstone and a number of fighting and sports games.