Sunday was Independence Day in the Philippines and, to celebrate, Facebook (FB) let users in the country send an appropriate greeting.
Unfortunately, the message implied the country was at war.
The problem was the flag that Facebook displayed in its message. Uniquely, the Philippine flag can be inverted to indicate the country is in a state of war—normally, the blue stripe goes above the red stripe.
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Facebook’s greeting, surrounded by pictures of fireworks, showed the red stripe above the blue.
“This was unintentional, and we’re sorry,” Facebook said in a statement sent to The Philippine Star.
“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 declared independence from Spain on June 12, 1898. It first flew its inverted flag during the Philippine-American war that began the following year.