The embarrassing error happened during the England VS Scotland rugby coverage on February 24, reports Wales Online. Referee Nigel Owen, who is openly gay, was awarding a yellow card to England flanker Sam Underhill when the accompanying subtitles read ‘Yellow card. Nigel Owens is a gay penalty and yellow card.’
It was quickly corrected to ‘Nigel Owens is saying penalty and yellow card’ but eagle-eyed viewers spotted the error and quickly hopped on social media to complain.
Did anyone see the subtitles when yellow card was given? Re Nigel Owens??? Was that appropriate?
— Haider Bahrani (@HaiderSonneteer) February 24, 2018
— Nathan (@Nathanbrown995) February 24, 2018
The BBC later said the comment was due to a “error” made by the voice recognition subtitling software. “Our live subtitling service produces accuracy levels in excess of 98% but, as with all broadcasters, there are instances – particularly during live broadcasts – when mistakes happen,” said a spokesperson.
BBC explain ‘Nigel Owens is gay’ subtitle gaffe during Scotland-England gamehttps://t.co/jt9mATX6nu
— WalesOnline Rugby (@WalesRugby) February 27, 2018
“On this occasion the voice recognition subtitling software made an error which was spotted and corrected immediately.”
Owens was nonplussed by the subtitling error. “I must say I had a giggle when I saw this,” he tweeted on February 27. “I thought bloody hell this voice recognition is good.”
I must say I had a giggle when I saw this. I thought bloody hell this voice recognition is good. Shame it wasn’t about 25yrs ago it would habe helped me find out who I truly was sooner then. Mistakes happen so no worries at all on my behalf BBC it actually made me smile. https://t.co/WdawxHNGY5
— Nigel Owens MBE (@Nigelrefowens) February 27, 2018
“Shame it wasn’t about 25yrs ago it would habe[sic] helped me find out who I truly was sooner then. Mistakes happen so no worries at all on my behalf BBC it actually made me smile.”
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