Huawei has demoted its employees, who tweeted a new year message from an iPhone rather than a the brand’s device.
The Chinese telecom giant Huawei, who dislodged Apple last year from its position as the world’s second biggest smartphone-seller, below global number one Samsung, announced the punishments for the employees involved after Reuters saw the memo and shared the contents.
It was learnt that the Huawei employees who were responsible for the tweet quickly deleted it, but a screenshot of the tweet went viral, catching the attention of Huawei executives. According to Huawei’s corporate senior vice president and director of the board Chen Lifang, the tweet “caused damage to the Huawei brand,” and occurred when an iPhone was used to send the message after a desktop computer malfunctioned. Huawei felt the accidental tweet “showed procedural incompliance and management oversight.”
The mistake occurred when outsourced social media handler Sapient experienced “VPN problems” with a desktop computer so used an iPhone with a roaming SIM card in order to send the message on time at midnight, Huawei said in the memo.
Huawi demoted the employees responsible for the tweet from an iPhone by one rank, and also reduced their monthly salaries by 5,000 yuan, equivalent to approximately $728. Huawei has also frozen the pay rank of its digital marketing director for 12 months.