One of the most basic, and
crucial practices in journalism is fact checking.
Well, the news department over at KTVU-TV, a television news station in California, made a huge fact checking
error during their noon broadcast on Friday after they claimed to have learned the names of the four pilots on board of the Asiana flight that
crashed in San Francisco last Saturday.
four names that were given to the station were: Captain Sum Ting Wong, Wi Tu
Lo, Ho Lee Fuk and Bang Ding Ow. After a first read, viewers noticed that these names create a racially insensitive joke sentence. Watch the live broadcast below.
according to KTVU, they contacted the National Transportation Safety Board who confirmed
that the four names were correct. The confirmation was made by a summer intern
for the NTSB.
"A summer intern acted outside the scope of his authority when he
erroneously confirmed the names of the flight crew on the aircraft. The NTSB
does not release or confirm the names of crew members or people involved in
transportation accidents to the media. We work hard to ensure that only
appropriate factual information regarding an investigation is released and
deeply regret today's incident. Appropriate actions will be taken to ensure
that such a serious error is not repeated,” the statement said.
“We made several mistakes when we received this information. First, we
never read the names out loud, phonetically sounding them out,” the television
station’s statement said. “Then, during our phone call to the NTSB where the
person confirmed the spellings of the names, we never asked that person to give
us their position with the agency.”
Despite the apologies, Asiana Airlines announced on Monday morning that
they will sue the San Francisco TV to “strongly respond
to its racially discriminatory report" that disparaged Asians, Asiana
spokeswoman Lee Hyomin said, via a CBSNews.com report.