Social media giant Facebook on Saturday apologised for an offensive translation of Chinese president’s name, reported Reuters. Xi Jinping’s name appeared as “Mr Shithole” in posts on its platform when translated into English from Burmese.
Facebook said the problem has been fixed and it was now working to find out how the gaffe happened. “We have fixed an issue regarding Burmese to English translations on Facebook and are working to identify the cause to ensure that it doesn’t happen again,” Facebook said in a statement. “This issue is not a reflection of the way our products should work and we sincerely apologise for the offence this has caused.”
The error first came to light on the second day of Xi’s visit to Burma where he and state counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi signed multiple agreements. A statement about the visit published on Suu Kyi’s official Facebook page was littered with references to “Mr Shithole”. A headline in a local news journal read: “Dinner honors president shithole”.
China is Facebook’s biggest country for revenue after the United States.
This is not the first time Facebook has faced problems with translation from Burmese. In 2018, it temporarily removed the function after a Reuters report showed the tool was producing strange results.