media fooled by hoax, might be sued for “racism”

This is just bizarre. A media outlet was the victim of a hoax. On-air, the anchor read the fictitious names of the pilots who flew the Asiana flight that crash-landed. I have to admit, the hoax is funny. I don’t mean to disrespect those harmed in the botched landing. I just mean to say that I have a sense of humor, and hearing a serious news anchor read obviously-false names aloud, on the air, gave me a chuckle. The names that the news outlet took as legit? Try saying them aloud to hear just how obvious this hoax is.

Captain Sum Ting Wong
Wi Tu Lo
Ho Lee Fuk
Bang Ding Ow

One wonders how on earth they failed to spot the fact that the names were obviously erroneous. But the consequences will be serious, perhaps for less than noble reasons. The airline might sue over the false names report. My problem with this is that it comes after an apology from the news anchor and after any humiliation the news organization has already experienced. They fell for a joke, foolishly. They’re culpable for incompetence, not malice.

Asiana Airlines said Sunday its reputation was damaged by a report on a San Francisco TV station that used bogus and racially offensive names for four pilots on its plane that crashed earlier this month and is considering legal action.

I suspect an ulterior motive here. Asiana Airlines has had its reputation damaged, but not by a silly media report. Its reputation was damaged because of a plane crash that could easily have killed everyone on-board the plane. Distracting from their own culpability and playing the victim seems rather like a cowardly move, and one that could backfire on them.

(On a side note, I’m wondering how the names themselves are “racist,” and if they are, what the word “racist” means. Does the name “Amanda Hugginkiss” signify racism against anyone (white people, I guess)? Maybe I’m over-analyzing here.)

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