The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland has said Ryan Tubridy “could have been more careful in his choice of words” – as they responded to a complaint from an RTÉ Radio 1 listener.
Earlier this year, a listener issued a complaint over Ryan’s comments about Irish women wearing makeup on his radio show on June 29th.
A report shared by the BAI reads: “The complainant is of the view that the presenter’s comments in respect to Irish women were patronising.”
“The complainant states that the presenter, in discussing women and girls wearing a full face of makeup, commented on women looking more Irish the day after, when the makeup has been removed.”
“The complainant is of the view that with the ongoing discussion about the Black Lives Matter movement and on underlying racism in Irish society, this kind of flippant commentary is unacceptable.”
Responding to the complaint, RTÉ refuted claims that Ryan used the term “more Irish”, before clarifying what he actually said.
The report reads: “The broadcaster states that when discussing the amount of make-up worn by young Irish women, the presenter commented that when they removed their make-up, they ‘look better and young and Irish.'”
“The broadcaster is of the view that the interviewee and listeners would have understood that the context for the remark was with regard to younger people wearing excessive make-up.”
“The broadcaster believes that the reference to looking Irish would have been readily understood by listeners as it is a fact that Irish people, generally, have a skin complexion that is regarded as fair.”
“The broadcaster is of the view that this is one of the main reasons why Irish people, generally, are regularly advised to be aware of the risks of skin cancer, for example, from the sun.”
Following an investigation, the BAI decided to reject the complaint, but noted Ryan “could have been more careful in his choice of words”.
The BAI stated: “With regard to the comment made by the presenter, the Committee noted that the presenter did not refer to anyone as looking ‘more Irish’, as suggested by the complaint.”
“While discussing the way in which young people wear make-up, the presenter noted a contrast between seeing those young people with and without make-up on and commented that young people who are not wearing makeup may look ‘better and young and Irish’.
“The Committee noted that this comment was made during a discussion about how the appearance of a person’s skin and wearing make-up can affect an individual’s self-confidence.
“The Committee was of the view that the presenter was offering his personal view about young people wearing make-up, rather than a comment on different skin tones.
“The Committee noted that this was a somewhat offhand remark, however, it is important that broadcasters are aware of the impact of language and the Committee was of the view that the presenter could have been more careful in his choice of words,” they added.