(TMU) — Nobody is immune to making a mistake or two when it comes to using modern technology. Whether it’s an accidentally-tweeted nonsense word or the dreaded “butt dial,” sometimes a slip of the finger can lead to embarrassment.
And in Pakistan, a live-streamed political press conference left internet users in stitches after the person streaming it applied the Facebook “cat filter” to the serious event, placing cute pink ears and cat whiskers on the otherwise dour affair.
The live broadcast of the presser by regional minister Shaukat Yousafzai—an ally of Prime Minister Imran Khan and provincial governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa—was promptly flooded by bemused Facebook comments as the video went viral, causing an uproar among users.
You can't beat this! Khyber Pakhtunkhwa govt's live presser on Facebook with cat filters.. 😹 pic.twitter.com/xPRBC2CH6y
— Naila Inayat नायला इनायत (@nailainayat) June 14, 2019
Journalist Naila Inayat was one of the first who noticed that the broadcast had gone awry, as she tweeted:
“You can’t beat this! Khyber Pakhtunkhwa govt’s live presser on Facebook with cat filters.”
In the meantime, other users began posting comments on the video urging the page administrator to disable the cat filter.
One user commented:
“Remove the filter, the man has been turned into a cat.”
Journalist Mansoor Ali Khan tweeted:
“According to KP government’s social media team we now have a cat in the cabinet.”
Is this for real ????
— mahua dey (@mahuadey20) June 14, 2019
Hilariously, the video continued to stream live on Facebook with the filter turned on.
The “cat filter” is a tool that started out on Snapchat, and allows users to superimpose a cat’s visage—two cat ears, whiskers, and a button nose—on whatever it detects as a human face. The filter adjusts to faces as the video moves and adapts to movements, creating adorable animations.
However, the Facebook page that posted it—the official Facebook hub of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Party—quickly deleted the video a few minutes after the conference ended, but by then the cat was already out of the bag and users were sharing screenshots of the cat conference.
— PTI (@PTIofficial) June 15, 2019
Yousafzai took the mistake in good stride, telling Agence France-Presse news agency:
“I wasn’t the only one. Two officials sitting along me were also hit by the cat filter. The cat filter was turned on by mistake. Let’s not take everything so seriously.”
The party put out a statement noting that the cat incident was a simple “human error” made by a “hard-working volunteer.”
The statement continued:
“All necessary actions have been taken to avoid such incidents in future.”
And while the event may have caused some embarrassment from some, perhaps it also got a few more people interested in what otherwise would have been a run-of-the-mill affair.