Original post at 10:15 a.m.: The odds-on favorite for who would make the most inappropriate joke during last night's Oscars was obviously Seth MacFarlane. But while the host received his fair share of criticism (as well as praise) for his performance onstage, the Onion ran away with the most-inappropriate title with this tweet:
The tweet was up for about an hour before the backlash grew so loud that the Onion deleted it without comment. That in itself is somewhat noteworthy given the satirical outlet rarely (if ever) backs down in the face of you've-gone-too-far criticism.
Update at 11:50 a.m.: The Onion took to its Facebook page late this morning to offer an apology for the tweet. Here it is in full:
On behalf of The Onion, I offer my personal apology to Quvenzhané Wallis and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for the tweet that was circulated last night during the Oscars. It was crude and offensive—not to mention inconsistent with The Onion’s commitment to parody and satire, however biting.
No person should be subjected to such a senseless, humorless comment masquerading as satire.
The tweet was taken down within an hour of publication. We have instituted new and tighter Twitter procedures to ensure that this kind of mistake does not occur again.
In addition, we are taking immediate steps to discipline those individuals responsible.
Miss Wallis, you are young and talented and deserve better. All of us at The Onion are deeply sorry.