Facebook might have never imagined accidentally inverting the colors on a nation’s flag could lead to a declaration of a state being at war. This happened over the weekend when the social network unintentionally made the mistake of publishing a bespoke banner to its Philippine users with the red part of the country’s flag at the top and the blue part at the bottom. According to the Philippine Star, which spotted the blunder, this is used to signify that the country is in a state of war.
Inverted flag signifies state of war
Facebook designed this banner to celebrate the 118th Philippine Independence Day, and hence, the snafu became doubly awkward. The banner read, “Happy Independence Day! Here’s to all of the Philippines’ health, happiness and prosperity.” Spotting the mistake, many people asked Facebook to correct it.
One person said, “Facebook says we’re at war. Happy Independence Day, Philippines. May we truly be free.” Another person asked the U.S. firm to correct the mistake, saying blue should be over red as red on top symbolizes war.
Recognizing and apologizing for its mistake, the U.S. firm said in a statement to The Star, “This was unintentional, and we’re sorry. We care deeply about the community in the Philippines and, in an attempt to connect people on Independence Day, we made a mistake.”
The Philippines’ Republic states that the national flag, if flown from a flagpole, shall have its blue field on top when the nation is at peace while during a war, it should have the red field on top. It also says that if the flag is in a hanging position, the blue field shall be to the right (or to the observer’s left) in a time of piece, while at a time of war, it should have the red field to the right (the observer’s left).
Facebook activates Safety Check the first time in the U.S.
In other Facebook news, on Sunday, following the massacre in Orlando where a gunman shot dead 50 people in an LGBT nightclub, the social network activated its Safety Check function for the first time in the U,S. The company introduced Safety Check in October 2014, allowing users to spread the word that they are safe after a natural disaster or crisis.
On his official account, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said, “Waking up this morning, I was horrified to hear about the shooting in Orlando. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families, and the LGBT community.”
The incident is said to be the worst mass shooting in U.S. history. The shooter was killed in the police shootout at the nightclub, and the culprit was recognized as Omar Mateen, a 29-year-old Florida resident and a U.S. citizen. The incident emerged as a top trending topic on Facebook and Twitter with the hashtag #PrayforOrlando being one of the top posts throughout the day.