BBC News Reader Apologises After Giving Viewers ‘The Finger’

Apology After giving Viewers 'The Bird'

News presenter Maryam Moshiri. Credit: BBC News

A BBC news presenter has had to issue an apology following an embarrassing moment live on air.

Maryam Moshiri, a presenter for BBC News, found herself in the middle of controversy after an inappropriate gesture during a live broadcast on Wednesday, December 6.

The incident took place in the BBC studios, where Moshiri was caught on camera with a smirk on her face and her middle finger raised towards the camera.

Unintended Offence

Viewers were shocked to see Moshiri raise her eyebrows and tilt her head, followed by a quick flip of her middle finger towards the camera. The unexpected incident occurred just as she was about to deliver the latest news bulletin.

Realising her mistake, Moshiri quickly and professionally resumed her composure and started reading the headlines. The clip of this moment quickly spread across social media platforms, sparking outrage but mostly laughter.


The backlash led her to issue an apology on the social media platform Twitter/X: ‘Hey everyone, yesterday just before the top of the hour I was joking around a bit with the team in the gallery.

‘I was pretending to count down as the director was counting me down from 10-0.. including the fingers to show the number. So from 10 fingers held up to one. When we got to 1 I turned finger around as a joke and did not realise that this would be caught on camera,’ she explained.

‘It was a private joke with the team and I’m so sorry it went out on air! It was not my intention for this to happen and I’m sorry if I offended or upset anyone. I wasn’t ‘ flipping the bird’ at viewers or even a person really. It was a silly joke that was meant for a small number of my mates,’ admitted the presenter.

Public Response

One person’s comment underlined the shock, ‘BBC – Presenter swearing at licence taxpayers. Saw a photo of this yesterday & assumed it was photoshopped. But no. It’s the BBC swearing at us.’

‘Could you ever imagine Moira Stewart, George Alagiah or Alistair Burnett doing something like this? How a once great institution has fallen!’ said another.

Not wanting to miss an opportunity, Specsavers humorously posted: ‘We’re with you, Maryam. If you are struggling to see the countdown, let us know.’

Comedian Dara O Briain saw the funny side: ‘You’re a legend, this stuff happens, so ignore anything other than people laughing with you. All the best, x’

One more added: ‘I’m a great critic of the BBC indeed I can’t bear it especially the crappy “climate” obsession and the terrible spin on everything. However this is just funny, it shows a human having a laugh and making a comical mistake. No apology necessary in my eyes.’

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.


    • D. Bath

      08 December 2023 • 15:36

      This piece underscores in fact the world is full of too many overly sensitive crybabies.

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