"The Footy Show," a sports entertainment channel based in Australia, is clearing the air about statements made during the program, which called a baby "ugly."
Two Australian based parents became outraged on Thursday after a photo of their first-born daughter, Bella, surfaced on the Internet. Michael and Melanie Richmond are "still in shock and dumbfounded" that a photo of their daughter surfaced on Facebook with the discussion that the baby girl was "ugly."
The photo of the girl was sent in to the network for the shows "Look-a-Like" section. The image was compared to rugby league Peter Sterling, who happens to have no hair. After the image aired, Melanie Richmond noticed the picture on her Facebook. She called the network to complain.
But when reporters reached out to "The Footy Show" on Saturday, the network chose not to make a statement and was accused of "refusing to apologize." The show issued a statement on Facebook Sunday, explaining that they had already reached out to the parents of the girl.
"Regarding recent articles in News Ltd papers, the Look-A-Likes photo was sent into The Footy Show by a friend of the family and not taken off Facebook," the statement read. "We chose not to make a statement to News Ltd yesterday but we did not refuse to apologize to the family and we did speak to the family on Friday and will do so again today to reassure them we never intended to cause hurt to them or their child and of course apologize if it did."
Mrs. Richmond has argued that the network had no right to air a photo of her child, and is offended by the derogatory remarks.
"The fact is that somewhere, somehow, a producer has gotten a photo of my daughter and made the decision to put it on television. I know it's supposed to be tongue in cheek but she's just a baby. It's not cool," she said according to the Trong.com.