Saying profanities under your breath on live television may not be the ideal way to begin a new job. Ask A.J. Clemente, a West Virginia University graduate who began his first ever news broadcast on North Dakota’s NBC affiliate KFYR with two very inappropriate words. We all get nervous our first day on the job, and A.J. lent his mistake to not knowing his microphone was live. Should A.J. have been a bit more careful as an aspiring news anchor? Maybe he truly was not aware, as he did not have any prior experience reporting. At first, A.J. was simply suspended for the slip, but on Monday he tweeted that he had been fired.
His tweets did not end there, but continued with a series of apologies, thank yous, and promises to come back better. He even admitted that the only thing he can do now is laugh at himself. A.J.’s mistake resulted in the Twitter trend #keepaj, which might not have been successful for his gig at KFYR, but who knows what is in store for him next. With almost 10,000 Twitter followers, people are certainly paying more attention to him now than they ever did before his first newscast.
Can he use the power of social media to turn this whole incident around and actually come back stronger? Now, the public knows his name and major news outlets are talking about him, which is not exactly the norm for North Dakota reporters. Does A.J. have the potential to save face and garner enough support to begin a new, successful endeavor? Only time will tell if the old adage that all press is good press can hold true in this controversial case.