Shalom Life | July 01, 2014

Bogus Deaf Interpreter the Face Of Tel Aviv’s Livelens App

A new video sharing app has recruited Thamsanqua Janjtie, the infamous interpreter who signed nonsensical gestures during Nelson Mandela’s memorial service, as the face of it’s viral video ad campaign

By: Caitlin Marceau

Published: May 7th, 2014 in Business » Israel

 Bogus Deaf Interpreter the Face Of Tel Aviv's Livelens App

A Tel-Aviv company is now using the face of the infamous Thamsanqua Jantjie in their new promotional videos for their video sharing app Livelens. The app allows people to stream content live to audiences, with the option of making their content free for viewers or at a cost.

Jantjie was exposed to the world as a phony when he signed meaningless words to audiences while working as an interpreter during Nelson Mandela’s memorial service. Standing next to President Barack Obama, Jantjie signed nonsensical gestures in lieu of sign language. According to a report by The Times Of Israel, Jantjie claims he was hallucinating during the speech and later checked himself into a mental hospital due to schizophrenia.

According to the Daily News, Sefid Shaked of Livelens explains that for their commercial they, “wanted to choose a presenter who is the worst presenter for a live app possible; you know, the person who did the worst screw up on live TV — ever.” In the video Jantjie pokes fun of himself with new bogus interpretations, signing “me famous celebrity” in one scene and “now I do campaign for money” in another with hundred dollar bills for a backdrop.

He even imitates Old Spice’ “I’m on a horse” commercial in the video.

Shaked explains that to get him out of the institution he’d checked in to for a day to shoot the video in Johannesburg shoot, Livelens hired a journalist to pose as a family member and Jantjie was released under the guise of attending a wedding. Daily News has since reported that Jantjie has since been released from the hospital.

In the video, Jantjie tells viewers, “I am really, really, sorry for what happened. Now I want to make it up to the whole world.” While this “apology” seems less than genuine, as it’s intercut with his signing of “me famous celebrity,” Shaked claims that Jantjie is a “nice guy.”

But I guess we’ll just have to take his word for it. Watch the ad for Livelens below:

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