Announcer arses

Why do some radio stations, and to a lesser extent TV channels, think that it’s a good thing to have announcers acting like arses?

NZ Herald reports that two announcers (Matt Heath and Jeremy Wells) have been ‘suitably reprimanded’ and will be off air today, but then said “they are flying to Las Vegas for a work-related project”. That doesn’t sound like much of a reprimand. It sounds more like ‘get stuffed, we’ll act like arses if we want to’.

Radio Hauraki hosts reprimanded for on-air stunt

Radio Hauraki hosts Matt Heath and Jeremy Wells have been reprimanded for an on-air stunt when they aired an interview with the mother of England cricketer Ben Stokes despite assuring her it was off air.

Deborah Stokes called Radio Hauraki to complain about comments made about Ben, who was hit for four consecutive sixes by West Indies batsman Carlos Brathwaite in the final over of the World T20 cricket final on Monday morning.

Stokes, who was born in New Zealand, became the brunt of some jibes because of comments he made ahead of the final in which he said he enjoyed “the big moments in games”.

Mrs Stokes asked to speak to someone off air at Radio Hauraki and, after being assured by Heath she was, said she was “brassed off” about the attacks on him.

NZME group progamme director Mike McClung said Heath and Wells had been rebuked.

“Matt and Jeremy are famous for identifying where the line is and then ignoring it, however putting Ben’s mum to air without her knowledge, albeit defending her son, was obviously well over that line,” McClung said in a statement.

“They’ve been suitably reprimanded, and are off-air tomorrow.”

Heath and Wells are flying to Las Vegas tomorrow for a work-related project.

That comes across as a very poor ‘rebuke’. The Herald and Radio Hauraki are both owned by NZME.

Media rival Stuff also reports on this, saying that Stokes has not received any apology.

Radio hosts Jeremy Wells and Matt Heath in trouble over call from Ben Stokes’ mum.

Deborah Stokes, the mother of English cricketer Ben Stokes, said she she has received no apology after controversial radio hosts Jeremy Wells and Matt Heath broadcast a conversation with her after telling her she was off air.

While Radio Hauraki said the pair had been “suitably reprimanded, and are off-air tomorrow,” sources close to the pair said they were never due to be on air on Thursday as they were headed to Las Vegas on a promotional jaunt. Deborah Stokes said she was unaware if Wells or Heath had been punished because no-one had contacted her.

On Wednesday evening Wells and Heath posted a photo on Hauraki Breakfast Facebook page of them at the airport with champagne and a message, “Feeling really remorseful for what we done. On route to Vegas for that important business trip.”

news.com.au report says Heath twice told Deborah Stokes she was off air – but continued the conversation despite discovering she was the mother of the English allrounder.

Stokes said on Wednesday night no-one from NZME had spoken her to say they were sorry for the prank.

“The first I knew about it (Wells and Heath not working on Thursday morning) was when a friend said it (the story) was online,” Stokes said. “It might have been nice to get one (an apology).”

Announcers bagging sports people seemingly for fun and for ratings looks bad enough.

But lying to someone ringing up with what sounded like reasonable concerns, saying they were not on air when they were speaking live, is a particularly arsy thing to do, and Radio Hauraki and NZME seem to be taking the piss with their report of a Clayton’s reprimand and no apology.

As well as being prats on Radio Hauraki  Heath and Wells are also contracted by NZ Cricket “on a season by season basis as part of radio’s Alternative Commentary Collective”.

I’ve never listened to the alternative commentary, and certainly have no interestbut with behaviour like this I think NZ Cricket should carefully consider what sort of arses they support.

The Herald also published this:

HeathWells

It’s not a surprise to see heath and Wells still acting like arses, but it’s a very bad look for the Herald to be acting like arses on this as well.

I think the Herald owes the stokes an apology as well – a proper one.