The British Broadcasting Company, or the BBC, has come under fire after a segment on the news featured a White reporter using the n-word, uncensored, to report a racist attack.
Reporter Fiona Lamdin used the word to reinforce a report about an attack in the city of Bristol, where a Black National Health Service (NHS) worker was purposefully hit by a car.
Despite a warning that she was about to use “highly offensive language,” the use of the uncensored n-word was enough to cause swift backlash.
WARNING: graphic images of the man’s injuries
Doesn't matter which way you cut it, Fiona Lamdin should not have said the n-word on TV. What was she thinking? There was no need for her to say it, bleeped or not, whether at 10.30am or any time. Lamdin & her editors – up to senior BBC News management – must take responsibility
— Matthew Teller (@matthewteller) July 29, 2020
She was factually reporting a story.
— alanscott (@alansco30862700) July 29, 2020
Pls explain why you felt the need to say the n-word?????
— and_thenshe (@and_thenshe) July 29, 2020
People responded directly to Lamdin after she shared a photo of the victim on Twitter.
Hi, I'm just wondering why you thought it's acceptable to drop the n-word in your report on BBC News? Didn't you get the memo? Non-Black people can never say that word, even when describing a racist incident.
— Zab Mustefa (@ZabMustefa) July 29, 2020
Fiona lamdin liked this tweet… also Fiona lamdin: thinks it’s acceptable to say the n word on her bbc news package.@FionaLamdin why did you think it was 1) necessary 2) acceptable for you to use the n word today on your news package? https://t.co/0Jl9N58sVK
— Bubbles (@bubbIxs) July 29, 2020
Lamdin has not commented on the report, however the BBC did.
They said in a statement:
“This was a story about a shocking unprovoked attack on a young Black man.”
“His family told the BBC about the racist language used by the attackers and wanted to see the full facts made public.”
If no one in the editorial team dared to stop the explicit use of offensive language; you should have. Buck stops with you.
— Ola Holiday (@OlaHoliday) July 29, 2020
The BBC response on @FionaLamdin saying n-word, stating family wanted it.
Not good enough. Since when do interviewees dictate wording used, especially racial slurs.
We don't say what Wiley said because it's disgusting, but yet the n-word is ok. https://t.co/eqR35FFg1m
— Sheree Atcheson (@nirushika) July 30, 2020
Fiona Lamdin never should have said it before or after 9pm it doesn't matter!!! https://t.co/GpnzTc9jZv
— Seyi Akiwowo (@seyiakiwowo) July 29, 2020
Soooo if this cancel culture is real how come Fiona Lamdin hasn't faced any consequences?
— Seyi Akiwowo (@seyiakiwowo) July 30, 2020
You aren’t actually black therefore you have NO RIGHT to tell people to ‘get their priorities straight’. You’ve NEVER been on the receiving end of the N word. It was unnecessary. People can focus on more than one issue at a time. People like YOU are a problem.
— Soraya Stuart (@sorayastuart) July 29, 2020
Despite defending the choice, the BBC said they will no longer air the uncensored version of the report.
The word gets censored on all media outlets during the day. No excuse.
— Benson 🖤 #BMR (@BenMinuteRule) July 30, 2020
As a white dude I could not even bring myself to saying that word, and I shouldn't
— Zuma Payload (@ZumaPayload) July 30, 2020
if you've seen the BBC news clip where @FionaLamdin uses the N word in a report and want to take action – there's now a section on the BBC complaints page about this. you can only add your email for updates but can also submit a full complaint separately https://t.co/LXdTkgKPTJ
— 𝚓𝚎𝚗 (@chunkyscorpio) July 29, 2020
A black person can say the word.
Also: language used in rap songs is not language that's appropriate for BBC news.
I bet all the white conservatives using this ridiculous defence desperate to get to say racial slurs, would mind if bbc reporters used other rap lyrics.
— Kahve (@hammerotass) July 29, 2020
No. She can say the "n-word" like the rest of the world. Does not diminish the report.
— Ana Rita (@AnaRitaA29) July 30, 2020
The n-word is considered one of the most offensive words in the English language.
It points to a long history of racially motivated violence—especially in the USA. The word immediately creates a feeling of unease for some people.
While a marginalized community may decide to use a racial slur in their own culture, that isn’t a free pass for anyone outside their culture to use it.