This BBC journalist had his colleague and the Internet chuckling after his mistake on live television.
Correspondent Dan Johnson was discussing recent events in Afghanistan with colleague Shaun Ley, who was in the studio. Prior to his widely broadcasted mistake, Johnson had difficulties making sure he got in front of a camera in the first place.
In a later tweet about the event, Johnson said: “I was filming with my iPhone, balancing on some cushions in front of the window having only just managed to get in the hotel room and make the connection in time after being locked out by a dodgy room card.” Clearly, he wasn’t off to a great start, but it didn’t end there.
The conversation is great at first – but once Ley begins speaking, it is clear that Johnson may not be able to hear what is being said. The blank stare he gives Ley while he speaks is an early indicator of technical issues.
Then everything goes wrong when Ley asks Johnson: “The events in the last few weeks – in the recent week where you are, have been an extraordinary turnabout in events haven’t they?” Johnson is thought to have been in Kandahar, Afghanistan at the time of this chat.
Johnson, presumably unable to hear Ley’s question, continues to stare at the screen for a few awkward moments. He then abruptly turns away from the camera, shaking his head, and drops the famous line: “This job, man. This job.”
BBC News is quick to cut back to the studio, where Ley explains the situation to viewers while holding back his laughter. Johnson has not fled the scene in a rush of emotions caused by the events in Afghanistan. He’s just having technical issues.
Johnson took to Twitter to share the news clip, explain the situation, and laugh along with the rest of the Internet.
His lighthearted acceptance of his mistake is a great reminder of how to navigate a faux pas like this caused by technology. Dan Johnson had a bad night, but it doesn’t make him a bad journalist. We’ve all been there.
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