Several weeks ago, in a report on the Sewol ferry disaster in South Korea, in which nearly 300 people died, Fox used footage of grieving Tibetans instead of Koreans. Despite repeated complaints to Fox, it took them several weeks to acknowledge the mistake and then apologize for it.
On April 25th, the KoreAm blog wrote about footage that was aired on April 19th:
Rick Phillips, a staff member from the Korean Cultural Center of Los Angeles, said he and the rest of the staff just heard about the segment today from a local Korean news reporter. Members of the community had contacted the Korean Cultural Center, as well as the Korean media, complaining about the issue, he said.
He said he personally called the Fox station twice earlier this afternoon, emailed producers about the issue and also sent a letter on behalf of the Korean Consulate, but could not get a live person on the line. In the letter, Phillips said that he stated that the Korean Cultural Center did not believe the people in the footage—at that 1:40 mark when the reporter talks about ferry victims’ relatives—are Korean, nor do they believe that the footage was even taken in Korea. He said the Consulate has yet to hear a response.
On May 5, nearly two weeks later, Erik Wemple, of the Washington Post, picked up the story, complete with a screenshot of the obviously-not-Korean griever:
Wemple noted that Phillips wrote three letters to Fox about the error that went unanswered. But when the Washington Post contacted Fox, the network finally responded:
Fox News today confirmed the screw-up to the Erik Wemple Blog. “The wrong video was mistakenly pulled from the international feed. We regret this error and have corrected the footage online and will address it on air, as well,” says David Clark, Fox News’s executive producer for weekend news and programming. Indeed, file this one in the category of innocent broadcasting errors — mourning over the April 16 ferry accident and the April 18 Mount Everest avalanche was happening concurrently.
A Fox News spokeswoman says the network was unaware of any complaints about the report.
OK, innocent mistake – except for the fact that one look at the video should have been enough for someone at Fox to notice it. Even I, a non-Asian not especially familiar with Koreans, can tell the person in the footage is not Korean. Why didn’t anyone on Fox News’ staff catch the error? Even worse, why didn’t anyone respond immediately when they were notified by Phillips on April 25th?
If Fox was “ unaware of any complaints about the report” it’s only because they were not paying attention until they figured they had to.
There was no explanation for the delay today when Julie Banderas finally offered the overdue apology:
Three weeks ago on this very broadcast, we made an embarrassing one and now we would like to apologize for it. In a story about the South Korean ferry tragedy, we mistakenly showed a photo, a short piece of video of victims’ families from the avalanche of Mt. Everest.
We apologize for making this error, especially to anyone who were offended by it. As a result, we have re-examined and revised our procedures to minimize the chances of further such mistakes.
You can view the apology below.
Next you be telling them that there’s different kinds of Spanish people.
These third-rate executive/senior producers couldn’t operate a vending machine.
That twit that runs the weekend programming should have been terminated weeks ago. Let’s see if Nixon trainee Ailes has the guts to remove this amateur from the payroll.