Designer Kenneth Cole Cracks Twitter Joke About Egyptian Protests, Immediately Scrambles to Apologize

Either Kenneth Cole has some serious egg on his face or the designer now has one less employee in his marketing department this afternoon. Earlier today, Cole tweeted “Millions are in uproar in #Cairo. Rumor is they heard our new spring collection is now available online at [link to their online shop] -KC” Within the hour, the post got some less-than-positive attention from outlets like Ad Age, who said, “Kenneth Cole and others in the media and marketing industries not only suffer from a lack of tact, they suffer from a lack of historical knowledge and the ability to grasp that the situation in Egypt could get a hell of lot uglier than it is even at this moment.” An hour later, as the original post started circulating and receiving even more negative press, Cole tweeted, “Re Egypt tweet: we weren’t intending to make light of a serious situation. We understand the sensitivity of this historic moment -KC.” Finally, just minutes ago, Cole wrote, “I have removed this morning’s tweet” (though you can still see it in the main feed) and offered an apology on the brand’s Facebook account:

I apologize to everyone who was offended by my insensitive tweet about the situation in Egypt. I’ve dedicated my life to raising awareness about serious social issues, and in hindsight my attempt at humor regarding a nation liberating themselves against oppression was poorly timed and absolutely inappropriate.

Update: Reader Brad Phillips just sent us over a link to his great dissection of Cole’s most recent apology. We say “most recent” because the one above is the latest of two already today, but also, after reading Phillips’ review, we wouldn’t be surprised if there will be another one, or more, coming.

Update #2: Our sister blog All Twitter points to the launch of the very funny @KennethColePR, which is offering up more offensive tweets like “People are looking at our sales girls in Chernobyl like they have three eyes. It’s just our insane markdowns!” and “Wardrobe got you water-BORED? GITMO of our new spring collection.” The site’s been live for less than two hours and already it has thousands of followers. This internet thing moves fast!