An American PR Executive landed herself in hot water when an AIDS “joke” she posted on Twitter ended up going viral.

On Friday a PR Executive called Justine Sacco posted on Twitter that she was “Going to Africa. Hope I don’t get AIDS. Just kidding. I’m White”. Within minutes the tweet went viral but Sacco was unaware having just boarded a long-haul flight to South Africa.


Sacco’s employer is IAC, the internet giant responsible for such web hits as Vimeo, Tinder, OkCupid, CollegeHumor, and – although it appears Sacco might not be holding that position for much longer.

A spokesperson for IAC said “This is an outrageous, offensive comment that does not reflect the views and values of IAC. Unfortunately, the employee in question is unreachable on an international flight, but this is a very serious matter and we are taking appropriate action.”

At time of writing Justine Sacco has landed in Cape Town, South Africa and has clearly in a panic deleted her Twitter account.  Some kind soul however has registered and re-directed it onto

Our Editor-in-Chief, Tom Hayes, recently wrote a piece on whether it’s ever acceptable to make jokes about HIV/AIDS – perhaps if Justine sees this she might consider adding it to her reading list…


  1. I think it’s safe to say that she’s unemployable history. Well, not entirely unemployable – maybe Westboro Baptist Church could use her as a PR person…


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