Someone reset the ‘Australian Media Embarrassing Itself’ stopwatch, we’ve just clocked a new hall of famer. The Today Show (Australia) tweeted about The Weeknd to celebrate him topping the Billboard Hot 100 Song Of All Time, and included a photo of someone who is definitely not The Weeknd.
Christ, and here I was thinking the whole Adele fiasco was going to be the most cringe moment of the week, and yet here we are.
Nine’s Aussie program tweeted on Tuesday afternoon, congratulating the Canadian singer (whose real name is Abel Makkonen Tesfaye) after his mammoth hit, ‘Blinding Lights’, was named the new No 1. Billboard Hot 100 song of all time.
According to Pitchfork, The Weeknd’s 2019 track has spent a whopping 90 weeks on the singles chart, beating the previous record held by Chubby Checker’s 1960 hit ‘The Twist’.
Only the Australian Today Show didn’t use a photo of The Weeknd/Abel in the tweet, it used a recent photo of someone impersonating The Weeknd.
Um, is anyone gonna tell them? Is anyone just quietly gonna slide in like “hey mates, just so you’re aware, that’s absolutely not the guy you think it is.”
Not only is it not The Weeknd, it’s actually the co-host of The Today Show (US) – journalist Al Roker. It might seem like a cringe mistake, but it’s essentially saying that all Black people look the same and can be easily mixed up, which absolutely smacks of racism and is massively offensive.
How did I find this out? By doing one (1) Getty Images search.
Legit, I just went to the photo site, punched in ‘The Weeknd’ and all these photos of Al dressed up as the singer for the show’s Halloween special back on October 29 popped up. Even doing a quick search of Al Roker and The Weeknd spat out coverage of the journo performing the hit single in a fake Super Bowl halftime show.
— TODAY (@TODAYshow) October 29, 2021
The Aussie Today Show’s tweet was deleted a couple of hours after it was published, so clearly nobody had swung by the social media manager’s desk just for a couple of hours. Or maybe everyone in the office thinks it’s the right person? What is happening? Am I in some kind of bizarro world?
“The tweet was taken down as soon as we realised an error had been made and in no way do we want this to diminish The Weeknd’s incredible feat,” a spokesperson from Nine told PEDESTRIAN.TV on Wednesday afternoon.
Without fail, Twitter’s having a fucking field day with the glaring error.
Baby who is the man in the picture? The weekday? https://t.co/HRr5M51IXR— Mulalo (@itsmulalo) November 24, 2021
Why you got The Weeknd looking like The Week in this?????? ????????????????????
— Jermaine D’Vauz (@jermainedvauz) November 24, 2021
The optics on this, my lord.