Reporter handed a sweater to put on mid-broadcast
It was a breezy 71 degrees this weekend in Los Angeles, but that didn’t stop one local TV station from awkwardly making their female meteorologist cover up her “unprofessional attire” with a sweater right in the middle of her Saturday weather report.
KTLA meteorologist Liberte Chan was in the middle of her broadcast when a mysterious arm dangling a gray sweater appeared at the lower-right edge of the screen.
“What’s going on? You want me to put this on?” Chan asked confusingly, “Why? ‘Cause it’s cold?”
“We’re getting a lot of emails,” the male voice is heard saying.
Befuddled, Chan took the sweater and joked that she looked “like a librarian.”
This prompted a flood of responses on social media, inspiring the hashtag #SweaterGate:
— Leah Pipes (@leahmariepipes) May 15, 2016
— The New Independence (@TheNew76) May 16, 2016
— S Adrianne McCann (@sadriannehm) May 16, 2016
Chan later explained on social media that a “very demure” black and white patterned dress she had previously been wearing “keyed out” on the green screen so she had to wear a different dress, at which point she and her colleagues read some of the unnecessarily angry emails sent to the station from angry viewers.
“Liberte Chan looked like she stayed out late at a party and came to work in the same dress. Not appropriate for a morning weather report. The show’s producers should not have allowed her to do it in a cocktail dress,” one email read.
But many other outraged viewers noted the double standard of a show’s producers asking their reporter to cover up in the name of “decency” just a few years removed from inviting lingerie-clad models into the weather report and broadcast.
Chan later apologized for any viewers discomfort and addressed her thoughts on the issue since it went viral on her personal blog.
“More importantly, I hope my viewers were able to plan their Saturday once they heard my forecast and enjoyed the sunny weather after the clouds cleared.”