It's fair to say that the apology given by the BBC was not received well.

The Twitter team behind BBC North released an apology that many are calling unacceptable.

In the tweet the BBC North West team, said,

“We have deleted a tweet about our project to pay tribute to COVID victims. Given we have used red ribbons as part of it, we understand why some people found it insensitive on World AIDS Day. We’re sorry.

“We have been working closely with those who have lost loved ones to COVID and this initiative is to remember those who have died during the pandemic.”

bbc apology for tree of lives and using red ribbon

What happened for the BBC to have to apologise?

The row started after the BBC announced it had created a project to commemorate lost lives from COVID in the North West, except they used a red ribbon, a symbol for the lives lost due to AIDS and which has been in use since 1991. The other element that truly upset people, was the date on which they decided to announce the project, the 1st of December, globally known as World AIDS Day.

“Unacceptable”

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The apology was branded a “non-apology” by many and an insult to the millions of lives lost to AIDS.

The apology was dismissed as fakery by many, including user Chris who blasted the BBC newsroom’s apology as “Utter fakery”.

One user also commented on the disrespect of misappropriating well-known LGBT+ symbols in 2020.

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“At the end of a year in which the rainbow flag was ‘borrowed’ to celebrate the NHS and even gay publications were promoting anti-trans lobbying groups, today of all days is not a good moment to misappropriate the red ribbon”

This is the second symbol appropriated from the LGBT+ community in 2020. The Pride rainbow flag which was designed by Gilbert Baker in 1979 became synonymous with the NHS and COVID-19 during the early months of the pandemic in the UK.

Another added that the 1st of December should be left to “remembering, mourning, and celebrating the lives of a near generation of queer people…”

THEGAYUK.com reached out to the BBC for further comment