Newspapers apologize for referring to Canuck as 'dark guy'
Two B.C. newspapers have apologized after triggering a social media firestorm with a racially charged description of one of the Canucks’ prospects.
The Vancouver Sun and The Province both posted a picture of defenseman Jordan Subban Tuesday night celebrating a goal in the Canucks’ 4-2 pre-season win over the San Jose Sharks.
The caption read “Vancouver Canucks celebrate goal by Jordan Subban (dark guy in the middle).”
Outraged fans quickly took to Twitter, where they chided the papers for crudely and unnecessarily drawing attention to Subban’s race.
Both the Sun and Province removed the offending caption minutes after it was brought to their attention, and issued separate apologies online.
Last night we ran a photo caption that should never have been written, let alone run online. We apologize to @jordansubban. (1/2)— The Vancouver Sun (@VancouverSun) September 24, 2014
The Sun is looking into this so we can make sure it doesn't happen again. (2/2)— The Vancouver Sun (@VancouverSun) September 24, 2014
On Wednesday, Sun editor-in-chief Harold Munro said he had also reached out and apologized directly to Subban.
“It’s a terrible mistake,” Munro told CTV News. “We’re taking steps to ensure something like this doesn’t happen again.”
According to the Sun, the caption was written by the photographer, identified on the paper’s website as Steve Bosch, and was never intended to be published.
Munro said the offending excerpt in brackets was only intended to help a staff member identify Subban before the image was uploaded.
“Those instructions were not intended to be published, but someone in haste published that as part of a photo gallery that went up,” he said.
“People want to get this information up quickly and sometimes they take shortcuts that they shouldn’t be taking, and those are the things we need to correct.”
The Sun hasn’t identified who was responsible for publishing the caption, but said it is investigating.
Munro said the paper will decide on any potential punishments after the circumstances are confirmed and reviewed.
The Province regrets an insensitive description of Canuck Jordan Subban in a photo caption on our website last night. 1/2— The Province (@theprovince) September 24, 2014
We apologize to Subban, the Canucks and their fans for any offence. We are examining our process to ensure it can never happen again. 2/2— The Province (@theprovince) September 24, 2014