Gaffe Gone Viral: Merkel Mocked for Calling Internet 'Neuland'

Chancellor Angela Merkel's 'Neuland' gaff is now trending on Twitter. Zoom
Getty Images

Chancellor Angela Merkel's 'Neuland' gaff is now trending on Twitter.

Chancellor Merkel described the Internet as "uncharted territory" on Wednesday while answering a question about the Prism spying program at an appearance with US President Obama. Now "Neuland" is a fully formed meme, and Merkel's gaff has gone viral.

While Barack Obama's whirlwind visit to Berlin largely resulted in good publicity for the president, his German counterpart, Chancellor Angela Merkel, wasn't so lucky. A comment she made during a joint press conference on Wednesday has gone viral in Germany and been met with a wave of ridicule on Twitter.

When asked about her response to the Prism data spying scandal involving the National Security Agency (NSA), Chancellor Merkel commented that the Internet is "Neuland" -- uncharted territory -- "for all of us."

Within minutes, #Neuland was trending on Twitter, and as of Thursday morning, the meme continues to grow, inspiring custom images, gifs and countless cracks at the chancellor, who is up for re-election in September.

"A new era has begun -- The Internet has finally reached Germany!!" tweeted @S_ButterFinger.

"Angela Merkel at Obama meeting: 'The Internet is virgin soil [#Neuland] for all of us.' How distant can politics get?" added @jerryweyer on the social media platform.

Sigmar Gabriel, the leader of the opposition center-left Social Democrats, used the gaff as an occasion to poke fun at the Christian Democratic chancellor. "I actually feel quite good for the most part in this #Neuland," he tweeted on Wednesday.

Merkel's spokesman took to the Web in Merkel's defense, tweeting that she was talking about a "legal and political Neuland."

chw

Article...
  • For reasons of data protection and privacy, your IP address will only be stored if you are a registered user of Facebook and you are currently logged in to the service. For more detailed information, please click on the "i" symbol.
  • Post to other social networks

Comments
Discuss this issue with other readers!
2 total posts
Show all comments
    Page 1    
1. What does she know?
Inglenda2 06/20/2013
The trouble is, Frau Merkel does not understand much of anything important, but as long as the biggest opposition party is run by a trio, which reminds many of the three wise monkeys, there is little chance of somebody with intelligence taking her place in the German leadership.
2. What does she know?
fredbrun 06/22/2013
Merkel is a lapdog of the US; she will hum and ha then do nothing. Someone who has lived under the STASI in East Germany should understand real freedom, now that she is supposed to live it. But so many Germans in East Germany lived in collusion with the State Security Services (the same was true under the Nazis) and as a result Frau Merkel follows German history. She acts intentionally stupid not to know the facts (Ich habe ja nichts gewusst!) which sounds familiar. With friends like the US and UK who needs enemies?
Show all comments
    Page 1    
Keep track of the news

Stay informed with our free news services:

All news from SPIEGEL International
Twitter | RSS
All news from Germany section
RSS

© SPIEGEL ONLINE 2013
All Rights Reserved
Reproduction only allowed with the permission of SPIEGELnet GmbH





European Partners
Presseurop

Politiken

Corriere della Sera

Fraudster’s False Bribery Claims

17 Arrests at Italy-Croatia Game


Facebook
Twitter