Trying to cover up mistakes rarely works, but a California TV station is trying. Oakland’s KTVU drew international scorn when it fell for a crude hoax and broadcast fake, racially offensive names for the crew of Asiana Flight 214, the flight that crashed at San Francisco airport recently. The station has publicly apologized, fired several employees, and is trying, with limited success, to get clips of its blooper removed from YouTube.
To defend its efforts to pull down the clips, the station cites the feelings of viewers; continually airing the fake names online, they claim, only compounds the offense. Unfortunately, that cat is out of the bag. The station will win a lot more points by learning from its mistake and moving on. Pressuring websites to take down the clip sends the opposite message — that the station wants to erase its mistake from history.