eNCA suspends Lance Witten over tweet

2012-11-08 11:44
Cape Town -  eNCA announced on Thursday that sports reporter Lance Witten has been suspended due to a controversial tweet he posted after the death of a Linkin Park concertgoer just outside the Cape Town Stadium.

The 24-hour news channel posted a statement on their Twitter page after Witten apologised for his tweet posted early on Thursday morning which read: "Linkin Park is so badass, people are dying to see 'em".

Witten has since deleted the post from his Twitter profile.

eNCA wrote:

eNCA also expressed: "Our hearts go out to the family and friends of the young woman who lost her life, and all those injured in the #LinkinPark incident."

A woman died on Wednesday night after an advertising structure collapsed just hours before US rock band Linkin Park took to the stage for their first concert in South Africa.

The band expressed their heartfelt condolences to the family of the victim.

*Do you think that Lance deserved this slap on the wrist or do you agree that he was stating his personal views in his own free time? Tell us what you think!


  • Lunga - 2012-11-08 11:59

    He stuffed up and apologised. Why suspend him? Are journalists not supposed to have opinions?

      Lunga - 2012-11-08 12:05

      It was more of a joke than an opinion. But still, people say so much on Twitter. If you looked closely at everyone's account, you're bound to find something \controversial\. You want people on twitter who remain as real as possible. If they make bad jokes in real life, they must make bad jokes on twitter. Why do we change who we are?

      Jeremy - 2012-11-08 12:13

      He brought E News into disrepute. That's why he's been suspended. You and I can say what we like in this forum, but if you're a public figure - in particular someone like Lance whose reporting you;e supposed to trust - you need to be careful about what you say in the public arena. Presumably, the fact that he's apologised will help him in his disciplinary hearing.

      cameron.modisane - 2012-11-08 12:26

      This is a serious joke. Suspension over a silly tweet. Come on people. Let us get real people.

      peter.ndamase - 2012-11-08 12:38

      He should know better, he has seen family victims' tears over this. Your job always determines where you go, what you can or cannot do. You tweet on a personal capacity but the fact is that his followers recognise him from eNCA, period!!!

      lydonmcg - 2012-11-08 12:44

      He should have known better than to say something that controversial on twitter with eNCA plastered all over his profile...it's in his bio, his background image, his tweets etc. Personal accounts should be devoid of any company-related branding if you are to avoid situations like this one.

      nasheenar - 2012-11-08 12:57

      In very poor taste I would say.

      Lunga - 2012-11-08 12:58

      That makes sense. What about McIntosh?

      vaughan.greene - 2012-11-08 13:08

      what amazes me is an organisation that is supposed to fight for freedom of speech is now suppressing free speech

      robbie.crouch - 2012-11-08 14:01

      Exactly... so much for free speech...

  • bart.mitchell.393 - 2012-11-08 12:05

    Stupid hurts

  • ranase - 2012-11-08 12:05

    trying to be witty i see...(pun intended)

  • caine.abel.75 - 2012-11-08 12:11

    be real but consider the vics family .....c`mon think b4 u tweet

  • fran.aphane - 2012-11-08 12:12

    Hahahaha, why are people so stupid? Vaseline tweet, racists and Witten tweets? I really don't know whatsApp with Mzansi but it makes me laugh. Tltltltltltl!

  • dadasuraj - 2012-11-08 12:19

    Why suspend him? he has every right to express his views on any subject of interest.

      kay.serra.3 - 2012-11-08 13:17

      If u think what he said is a view then u obviously have to get ur morals checked.

  • phumi.ntlabati - 2012-11-08 12:24

    I do not know where eNCA get these insensitive reporters, suffering from Foot and Mouth disease. If I remember correctly McIntosh Pholela used to be McIntosh Nzimande working for the same broadcaster before the Hawks! Pathetic if you ask me!

  • mphotant.thelejane - 2012-11-08 12:24

    I am glad i cant suspend myself for saying ish about eNCA. liberty of not working for another jacket.

  • chrisk61 - 2012-11-08 12:27

    Total over reaction. It was an insensitive comment, not worthy of a suspension. Typical company over reaction

  • vishal.ramphal - 2012-11-08 12:28

    Note to everyone, think before you tweet! Yes his tweet was distasteful but it's called freedom of speech. I think people should worry about more concerning matters rather than worry about a person's social media messages. Stop scrutinizing every little thing people.

  • phumlani.loliwe - 2012-11-08 12:30

    I thought people on facebook were the dumbest, they have nothing on twitter...

      robbie.crouch - 2012-11-08 14:04

      Usually the same crowd dude... ;-)

  • koo.doyle - 2012-11-08 12:33

    The whole culture of censoriousness is having an alarming effect on free expression. Seems like we are turning into a nanny state, where you can't make a joke, or have an opinion without getting into major trouble. What next? We should have the right to an opinion, even if some find it offensive. So much for free speech.

      robbie.crouch - 2012-11-08 14:05

      Agree 100%

      naeema.j - 2012-11-08 15:01

      Fine line between freedom of speech and insensitivity.

      koo.doyle - 2012-11-08 19:50

      Naeema, with freedom of speech, you cannot pick and choose what is protected, and what is not. You don't have to like, or agree with what he said, but you should defend his right to say it.

  • adriaan.vlok - 2012-11-08 12:34

    Public persona, making stupid public comment, while his public persona is connected to broadcaster, reckless and should face heavier punishment form employer.

      koo.doyle - 2012-11-08 19:51

      I cannot believe how ridiculous this is? What happened to freedom of speech? The corner stone of democracy? He apologised, build a bridge and get over it. Unless of course, you've never stuffed up? I find this overkill and baying for blood quite nauseating.

  • JP - 2012-11-08 12:36

    Well that's it no more E_news for me , they becoming just like the SABC he was not tweeting on behalf of E-news he was tweeting in his personal capacity. Freedom speech - twitter is all about fun , people take it to serious .

  • botha.fourie - 2012-11-08 12:36

    That is a sick and completely unnecessary and insensitive comment. Not good enough!!!!

  • zenithdolphin - 2012-11-08 12:39

    As a journo he should have known better!

  • sello.r.molefe - 2012-11-08 12:43

    @etv u cant speak ur mind , SABC u cant say Compound... No wanda why I dont bother watchin news..

  • leila.monroe - 2012-11-08 12:45

    Very dumb and insensitive comment! He should have known better, the comment is not funny at all, what was he trying to accomplish?

  • donna.homan - 2012-11-08 12:45

    He made a error in judgement at the time... he apologised... he could have just been given a warning and let that be...

  • liezl.haramis.7 - 2012-11-08 12:47

    E News....grow up...and take up politics.

  • stephen.j.dickson.3 - 2012-11-08 12:52

    It leaves me cold........bottom line.

  • Leon Williams - 2012-11-08 12:54

    when we comment dnt we also judge?we not perfect but we can be very insensitive too.unless its someone near and dear to us.jus a thought

  • mrp721 - 2012-11-08 12:55

    While the joke was in poor taste as a young life was lost and sadly now there are parents out there who will have to bury a child, something no parent should ever have to go through, I think suspending him is a bit harsh... He apologized and removed the tweet...

  • lulu.shezi - 2012-11-08 13:04

    good decision..it was uncalled for

  • Jayson Wolhuter - 2012-11-08 13:06

    He can tweet whatever he wants, even if it is in bad taste.

  • natassja.engelbrecht - 2012-11-08 13:09

    Would it be the same if he said that weeks after the accedent? Everybody makes jokes. I suppose its all about timing....

  • nomhle.s.msiza - 2012-11-08 13:13

    It was on his timeline for heavens sake!!! Mxm

  • ben.louw.5 - 2012-11-08 13:22

    Fail noob!

  • jango.za - 2012-11-08 13:29

    Amazes me that he gets fired for a tweet (and I am not condoning it in any way), but we have a President and his cronies who cannot (and will not) account for Billions of Rands wasted, frauded, put into personal properties, travels, luxury cars, as well as the many murder victims in our country, including on our farms, which receive no serious attention at all. How is it that our SA society is so tolerant on the one end, but completely hardcore on another? Lance should have thought about the victim and her family in this tragic incident, but to be fair, I have read far worse from rubbish politicians and their ongoing lack of delivery, deception, and public lying to know that if this deed deserves a firing - then our President deserves a hanging.

      jango.za - 2012-11-08 13:47

      LOL! A thumbs down. Proves my point: lying, stealing, dirty politicians are acceptable in our SA society. Lance, you were wrong with what you did, but you should have tweeted from the Presidents office. No accountability required in that scenario, your job would be safe.

  • williamwamala.nsubuga - 2012-11-08 13:33

    A lesson to those on twitter all the time, you may end sending a comment you end up regretting.Put your phones down for a while and think about what you are going to twit before posting it. Same thing has happened to Polela.

      robbie.crouch - 2012-11-08 14:08

      Whoever thumbed you down is a twit... ;-) As you say, think before commenting anywhere but please do not let that stop people voicing their opinion.

  • njabulo.jama.5 - 2012-11-08 13:43

    Its just twitter. Think these ppl r crucified a lot. Pls don't kill humor

  • Russell Williams - 2012-11-08 14:11

    it was just a comment made, with no deliberate intention. after all its twitter and the nature of the site allows for this type of humor.

  • morne.claassen - 2012-11-08 14:17

    Rihanna puts it best: "Don’t tell me you’re sorry 'cause you’re not. And baby when I know you’re only sorry you got caught." Have a look at this link: http://www.channel24.co.za/News/Local/etv-journo-Fans-dying-to-see-Linkin-Park-20121108 He only decided to apologize after his 3rd Twitter post - probably because he was told to, NOT because he meant it. Sorry, but the comment was completely disrespectful to the victim and her family. With being a journalist/reporter comes certain powers and certain responsibilities. I agree with freedom of speech, but it does not mean what you say will not hurt others. You are still accountable for your words.

      koo.doyle - 2012-11-08 19:56

      Yes, accountable in that everyone has the same right to call him an insensitive tool. Not accountable in that he could lose his job for expressing himself. That kinda nullifies the whole 'freedom' part of 'freedom of speech' doesn't it? There's no law against being rude, or disrespectful, or obnoxious. If you want freedom of expression, you cannot pick and choose what should be protected.

  • preshen.govender.12382 - 2012-11-08 14:23

    Castrate him also

  • UncleShep - 2012-11-08 14:48

    tweet responsibly guys......simple as that!

  • mandilakhe.nompehle - 2012-11-08 14:59

    TWeet nonsense on Twitter and you will kiss your job....\r\n\r\nAnd I think there's a tendency of journalists who speaks anything.. Just because they claim to know communication... Its funny coz they are dismissed and suspended....mxm...

  • conrad.koorsten - 2012-11-08 15:15

    suspended? Way too easy of a way out.He should get fired and never be allowed to report again! As a public figure he should have the common sense to know that it was a extremely insensitive thing to say.And to all you clever people that says its rediculous..What would your response be if it was your daughter/wife/sister/child???? Ag but he appologised so there all is forgiven??HER FAMILY WAS PROB STILL CRYING YET HE HAS THE AUDACITY TO TWEET THAT??!!!!!

  • The.whiz.777 - 2012-11-08 16:27

    Got what was coming stupid comment.

  • marcia.greune - 2012-11-08 18:03

    I think its stupid they suspended him... Go get a career in comedy Lance, at least there you can make silly light hearted jokes which shouldn't be taken so seriously

  • robin.dyers - 2012-11-08 23:34

    News "authorities" thrive on this. They tolerate vulgar premeditated hate speech comments on their sites, but play righteous protectors of human dignity when a celeb makes a careless comment. Leeches and perpetuators of suffering and malcontent.

  • jonathan.moyo.90 - 2012-11-09 06:29

    how many more people will continue to lose jobs over posts on twitter n facebook?

  • semakaleng.thulare - 2012-11-09 07:04

    He should have learned something from McIntosh...

  • cdamant - 2012-11-09 14:17

    What an inappropriate tweet. Uncalled for and definitely disrespectful to her and her loved ones she has left behind.

  • neil.daniels.718 - 2012-11-09 18:22

    TWITTER-the name says it all

  • sochdeveloper - 2012-11-09 19:52

    l am noticing a surprising and un understandable over-reaction over tweets in South Africa.

  • sochdeveloper - 2012-11-09 19:53

    l am noticing un understandable over-reactions over tweets in South Africa surely this is panic at its best from whoever suspended this guy

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