BBC Editor’s Leaked Email Lists An Advised Dress Code For TV Presenters – As Skirt Length Can Be ‘Distracting’
A leaked email from BBC editor Samantha Smith highlights advice on what’s appropriate to wear when presenting on TV.
Samantha Smith, editor of BBC’s ‘Inside Out South West’, emailed her colleagues a list of clothing attire and fashion choices she deems to be appropriate, and lessons she has personally learned from past mistakes.
According to the Mirror, Smith started her email by clarifying that her suggestions were open for discussion.
“The below is my view based on long experiences of getting it wrong and very occasionally right both reporting and presenting,” Smith wrote. “This is a starting point for a conversation so pitch in with your own thoughts.
“This is a minefield of PC pitfalls.”
The email pinpointed pieces such as smart jackets, block colours, ankle-length trousers and simple makeup as a good choice.
Female staff were reportedly advised to wear knee-length skirts: “skirts should reach to somewhere around your knees – controversial, maybe – but I honestly believe anywhere else is distracting.”
Long hair was also said to be ill-advised.
One piece of advice that was rather surprising was a suggestion of eliminating cardigans.
“No cardies. Even the very nicest ones in real life look too casual on TV. Avoid Per Una.”
Staff were also advised against patterns, leather, jewellery, fur, jeans and logos.
A BBC spokesperson told the HuffPost UK:
“This informal advice was shared with a small number of staff who appear onscreen about what does and doesn’t work on camera or under TV lighting.”