The South Korean Television Channel MBC apologized publicly after using images to represent countries during the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics.
Pictures of pizza for the Italian entourage, salmon for Norway, Dracula for Romania or Chernobyl to Ukraine were some of the images used by the South Korean broadcaster MBC to represent the countries during the broadcast of the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games.
A MBC it was criticized for making narrow and stereotyped representations of countries. In a statement published on Twitter, the station acknowledges that the decision was a “inexcusable error“.
“The images and captions used were intended to make it easier for spectators to understand which countries to enter during the opening ceremony. However, we admit that there was a Lack of consideration affected countries”, can be read in the apology.
The broadcaster recognizes “the seriousness of the problem during the broadcast of the Olympic Games” and goes “carefully investigate the image selection process and subtitles” and guarantees to examine “the system of production of sports programs to avoid similar incidents in the future”.
The case gained notoriety when journalist Raphael Rashid made a Publication on Twitter about the descriptions used by the South Korean channel. The tweet went viral and reached almost 17,000 ‘likes’.
Haiti was described as a country with a “political situation affected by the assassination of the president”, while Syria is “rich in mineral resources” and lives “a civil war 10 years ago“. Sweden has “a developed social state” and the Marshall Islands were “a nuclear test site of the United States”. El Salvador was presented with a photo of Bitcoin.
A MBC also posted the apology on the front page of its website and the station president, Sung-je Park, organized a press conference on the subject and sent notes to the embassies of the countries portrayed.
“The last weekend was the most painful and disastrous since I assumed the presidency of MBC. Again, I bow and apologize,” he said.
Park Sung-je also apologized for a legend that appeared during the football game between Romania and South Korea. The first goal of the game was an own goal by Romanian Marius Marin and during the break, MBC he wrote “thank you marin” on the screen.