Wendy's just tweeted the Pepe the Frog meme, a white supremacist mascot

Wendy's just tweeted the Pepe the Frog meme, a white supremacist mascot
FILE - This Friday, March 21, 2014, file photo, shows a Wendy's restaurant in Providence, R.I. The fast food chain is winning kudos from the internet for its amusing beef with a Twitter troll on Monday, Jan. 2, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)
Source: Michael Dwyer/AP
FILE - This Friday, March 21, 2014, file photo, shows a Wendy's restaurant in Providence, R.I. The fast food chain is winning kudos from the internet for its amusing beef with a Twitter troll on Monday, Jan. 2, 2017. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)
Source: Michael Dwyer/AP

This is why we can't have nice things. 

Wendy's has apparently undergone something of a brand overhaul for 2017, getting super-sassy on Twitter with its fans and haters — including a viral clapback that schooled some user on what a refrigerator is. Today, however, the hamburger chain steered its social media strategy into an iceberg, tweeting a Pepe the Frog meme — unaware that it's the mascot of the internet's racist, white-nationalist, Trump-loving "alt-right" movement. The meme, which began life as a chill webcomic character, was designated by the Anti-Defamation League as a hate symbol in September.

Wendy's Pepe tweet
Source: Wendy's/Twitter

Was it a sinister marketing ploy, an attempt to cater to militant right-wing patrons? Probably not. Wendy's was probably just tweeting its love of memes, but it picked one with an unfortunate — some would argue unfair — connotation. 

The tweet was removed "promptly," Wendy's later tweeted, because a community manager "was unaware of the recent evolution of the Pepe meme's meaning." (We reached out to Wendy's and will update with a response.)

"Since this used to be purely an innocuous meme, he had this fan content saved from a year or two ago," social media manager Amy Brown told BuzzFeed.

How likely are you to make Mic your go-to news source?

Cooper Fleishman

Cooper is Mic's tech editorial director. He was previously New York bureau chief at the Daily Dot.

MORE FROM

Uber drivers at JFK Airport are fighting for their right to pee

Bathroom options for Uber drivers are unsanitary, degrading and illegal. And there are even fewer options for women.

Researchers show Twitter is far faster than the police at predicting riots

Tweets can predict a riot up to an hour before police, but that may not be a good thing.

China is building an incredibly cool "forest city" that will combat pollution

Sustainability and air quality are just the beginning.

Inside the dangerous operation to smuggle free information into North Korea

They use balloons, drones and networks of smugglers — who risk torture to bring flash drives into the DPRK.

Scientists just spotted 2 black holes flirting and dancing like awkward middle schoolers

The two could someday merge to become one.

I can't stop laughing at this amazing iOS 11 glitch that basically turns your texts into Jaden Smith tweets

One iOS 11 bug — god, I hope this is a bug — stands above the rest, and I can't stop laughing.

Uber drivers at JFK Airport are fighting for their right to pee

Bathroom options for Uber drivers are unsanitary, degrading and illegal. And there are even fewer options for women.

Researchers show Twitter is far faster than the police at predicting riots

Tweets can predict a riot up to an hour before police, but that may not be a good thing.

China is building an incredibly cool "forest city" that will combat pollution

Sustainability and air quality are just the beginning.

Inside the dangerous operation to smuggle free information into North Korea

They use balloons, drones and networks of smugglers — who risk torture to bring flash drives into the DPRK.

Scientists just spotted 2 black holes flirting and dancing like awkward middle schoolers

The two could someday merge to become one.

I can't stop laughing at this amazing iOS 11 glitch that basically turns your texts into Jaden Smith tweets

One iOS 11 bug — god, I hope this is a bug — stands above the rest, and I can't stop laughing.