Newscaster Pranked with Fake Asian Pilot Names in Plane Crash – #TBT

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Newscaster Pranked with Fake Asian Pilot Names in Plane Crash – #TBT

April 28, 2016 – We begin our discussion of humor from the past with a look back at the prank played on San Francisco news station KTVU after the crash of an Asiana Airlines flight in 2013. Believing they had received verification from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), producers at the Fox affiliate released the names of four (fictional) pilots from the disaster. At least four people reportedly read the false names before anchor Tori Campbell read them during a broadcast. The names were: Captain Sum Ting Wong, Wi Tu Lo, Ho Lee Fuk and Bang Ding Ow. After the station returned from a break Campbell read an on-air correction but the damage was already done. The clip went viral worldwide, seeming to receive equal parts anger and amusement.

Newscaster Pranked with Fake Asian Names in Plane CrashBy day’s end, the NTSB issued its own apology for “inaccurate and offensive names that were mistakenly confirmed” to KTVU. “Earlier today, in response to an inquiry from a media outlet, a summer intern acted outside the scope of his authority when he erroneously confirmed the names of the flight crew on the aircraft.”
Soon after, the NTSB announced that it had fired a summer intern over the incident. Asiana ultimately sued KTVU-TV to ‘strongly respond to its racially discriminatory report’ and the station dismissed at least three veteran producers over the on-air gaffe. Asiana claimed “The reputation of the four pilots and of the company had been seriously damaged by this report.”

Although the fake names were confirmed by the summer intern at the NTSB, the actual origin of the hoax was never determined. The plane crash killed three people.

Looking back, was the prank on the news station Funny or Offensive? VOTE and COMMENT now…




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