Days after a South Dakota news anchor became the Internet’s latest star, she tells Trending Now that she has no regrets about her off-the-cuff on-air rant.
KSFY anchor Nancy Naeve's rise to YouTube celebrity began on Sunday night. Her co-worker at the ABC affiliate in Sioux Falls, meteorologist Shawn Cable, broke in to regularly scheduled programming to report a confirmed tornado in the area. The tornado touched down in Hospers, Iowa, which is about 70 miles from Sioux Falls.
Viewers, however, were outraged and took to the phone and Facebook to complain about Cable interrupting the season finale of "Once Upon A Time."
On Monday morning on the air, Cable showed footage of the tornado and then apologized for interrupting a TV show the night before. Next to him was Naeve, who fiercely rose to his defense.
"No show is as important as someone's life," Naeve states. "But I tell you what. If it was your home and your neighbors, you would feel differently. So please don't do that. That's not nice."
Naeve's impassioned plea was posted to YouTube by Cable, and it has been viewed more than 283,000 times. If anyone can relate to the situation, it is fellow meteorologists such as Bill Evans of WABC-TV in New York.
"I feel overwhelmed," Naeve wrote in an email to Trending Now. "I've had an outpouring of emails, Facebook messages and tweets from Meteorologists across the country thanking me for taking a stand. It's been great hearing from everyone."
Meteorologists such as Bill Evans of WABC-TV in New York can relate to the initial viewer reactions.
"Because we're in the tristate area, if you have thunderstorms in New Jersey, people from New York will go, 'I don't care what's going in Jersey, and you're interrupting "Grey's Anatomy,"'" he told us. "Or (the storms will) be in New York, and it'll be the same thing in Jersey or Long Island."
Evans said it is a common issue for the ABC station, which covers 29 counties with over 13 million people. But while viewers are taking to social media to vent their frustration, Evans said meteorologists are also using online platforms to inform their audiences.
"Everyone goes on Twitter. We put the radar and towns up and the maps, and they can see that," Evans explained. "It helps keep (the backlash) from happening."
Still what some viewers might not realize is that broadcast stations are mandated by law to inform viewers of emergencies — regardless of what programming is on at the time.
"TV stations, per the FCC, serve the public trust, and if that means breaking into TV programs to report dangerous weather conditions, then so be it," Dan Trigona said on the video. "Like your partner said ... people can go to ABC.com the next day and catch up."
Trigona was far from the only person to voice support for the South Dakota TV station.
"Wow, those idiots who complained about the weather statement need to get their priorities in check!" wrote Bobbi Ashley. "Shame on you who did this!"
Naeve said most of the responses have been supportive, but there is one thing she wishes she could change about the Internet's reaction.
"The 'I hate the' meme that was made with me pointing my finger saying 'That's Not Nice'; I hope people understand I'm not scolding our viewers," she explained. "I'm telling the mean (viewers) to think before they write or call because someone in our viewing area is depending on what Shawn is doing, even if that means you'll miss part of your TV show."
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