Ikea is facing a wave of jokes and memes over an ad campaign it created to honor Pride Month.
In the campaign, which features concept couches or "love seats" with designs inspired by several LGBTQ+ flags, Ikea invited individuals who identify with the community to share their love stories on the love seats.
therapist: it's OK, the Ikea pride collection can't hurt you— Louis Staples (@LouisStaples) June 29, 2021
the Ikea pride collection: pic.twitter.com/aBZDXKiC36
One design, in particular, is getting the meme treatment on Twitter: The love seat inspired by the bisexual flag.
The design shows a couch decorated in fabric hands that are blue, purple and pink and features cushions embroidered with the words: “When you change Or to And, nobody believes you.”
Several people took to Twitter to joke the couch "haunts" them, with some also concerned that the words invoke "biphobia."
"Somehow the words are my least favorite part. They're weird and make you think about biphobia, whereas the other couches are just pretty," wrote one user.
I both love and hate the bi couch. Somehow the words are my least favorite part. They're weird and make you think about biphobia, whereas the other couches are just pretty. The hands are just cursed and I kinda love it. pic.twitter.com/WG3v6MZQpD— Kate (@KateD412) June 30, 2021
im bisexual so i can say this: why is the bisexual ikea couch the ugliest of the pride couches?? feels biphobic im going to be a lesbian now— cassie (@littlehouse___) June 30, 2021
“We wanted to do something that highlighted the diversity within the 2SLGBTQ+ community because there are so many identities that aren’t given as much space or attention during Pride, especially during COVID-19,” Ikea Canada marketing communications director Claudia Mayne told the news outlet.
Lanigan explained his word choice for the poem he penned at 15 years old in a tweet.
"I’d love to explain the NOBODY BELIEVES YOU love seat! The line 'when you change "or" to "and," nobody believes you' is from a poem I wrote in high school about bisexual erasure I experienced from an ex-partner and others," he wrote.
"I’m a spoken word poet and the hands are meant to represent the audience reaction, especially those of other bisexual folks who would approach me after performances and share their story with me," he continued, elaborating on the inclusion of hands and arms in the design.
I’m a spoken word poet and the hands are meant to represent the audience reaction, especially those of other bisexual folks who would approach me after performances and share their story with me.— bisexual couch guy brian (@braino_drano) June 29, 2021
Ikea first launched the ad campaign earlier this month with a line of 10 couches. In a press release, the furniture retailer wrote that it has "long-standing history" of supporting LGBTQ communities and was the first company to run a television ad in the United States featuring a same sex couple in 1994.