Coverage of Sunday's Daytime Emmy Awards has sparked a backlash, with four social media gurus in the hot seat for their handling of red-carpet and backstage interviews. The Associated Press reports that critics are decrying the women's lack of knowledge about daytime television and their attempts at humor that included a rape joke.
The women, Brittany Furlan, Lauren Elizabeth, Jessica Harlow and Meghan Rosette, were described as “well-respected social media gurus” before the show. The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences apparently brought them on board in an effort to put a younger face on the streamed ceremony, the piece notes.
One website, soaps.com, noted that the hosts knew "nothing about daytime television, came unprepared to the red carpet, conducted themselves in a very unprofessional manner, spewed profanity, a rape joke and a racist remark.” The show’s producer didn’t respond to a request for comment, the piece adds.
Ryan Paevey, a star of “General Hospital,” said he had expected to talk about daytime TV and to receive good wishes from the hosts, but instead was subjected to off-color humor. Furlan told him, “We're going to get you away from us before we rape you."
Paevey told the AP that those remarks “kind of derailed the spirit of the evening.” He added that he believes if an apology is needed, it should be given to “Bold and the Beautiful” star Lawrence Saint-Victor, who was called “a beautiful chocolate man” and was asked, “What's it like to be a black man on a soap opera these days?"
The hosts were each paid $1,000 for 12 hours of work, TheWrap.com notes. The job description made it clear that people who weren't specifically informed about daytime TV could qualify, with the job requirements listed as having a “strong entertainment news background” and/or “strong social media following (300,000 followers minimum)."
“It seems that NATAS thought that people with a major social following would bring more viewers to the online stream of the show,” TheWrap notes. “If that did happen, they might be regretting their decisions even more. Everyone from fans to the media and the stars themselves came out against the hosts immediately, calling the 2-hour red carpet show a disaster.”
Given that the nominations were handed out on May 1, there was plenty of time for the hosts to learn about daytime TV before the event, TheWrap points out.
The report adds: “Brittany Furlan uploaded a behind-the-scenes video on Monday where she admitted that she didn't know who anyone was before, during, and after the Red Carpet show. At one point, she said that producers had promised to help the social media hosts out during the broadcast by telling them who everyone was before they interview them, but this clearly didn't work out as planned.”