TV news anchors wearing masks on camera ignites discussion


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Another Japanese "forest for the trees" argument. Most should be announcing and reporting from their homes or other isolated spaces, which, hello, TV stations in other countries have been doing for nearly the past year.

The main anchor or pair of anchors can be in the main studio with skeleton crew. But the rest of the on-air people - not to mention behind-camera crew - should be working remotely.

Presenting news with a mask on looks comical.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

"We need to be logical and rational, but I'm concerned about the situation in Japan where some people avoid working remotely" because they are too focused on having personal interactions and picking up on nonverbal cues to know what is expected in a certain situation, Matsutani said.

Where distance is not possible then wear a mask- it is that simple.

11 ( +13 / -2 )

The main anchor or pair of anchors can be in the main studio with skeleton crew. But the rest of the on-air people - not to mention behind-camera crew - should be working remotely.

Other than perhaps Wednesday Downtown, every show changed their set layout to put distance between people. I think this is reasonable. I am not sure if wearing a mask in addition would add any significant protection, but yes, the optics are important.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Some television programs have also garnered criticism on social media for their use of clear mouth shields, which are said to have limited effectiveness in preventing the spread of infections.

Those clear mouth sheields are a joke. I guess that is why the 笑い芸能人 (Japanese comedians) among others wear them

I do occasionally watch the news and there are some good documentaries to be found.

Have a good Sunday everyone. I think I'll go read a good book.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Where distance is not possible then wear a mask- it is that simple.

People have the wrong rules. They are wear a mask AND stay 2m apart. Without a mask - need to be 6m+ apart.

Everyone in public who are not living in the same home, need to be wearing a mask in public, over the mouth and nose.

People on TV and politicians set expectations for others. These people need to wear masks anytime they can be seen. I don]/t care if tey use TV tricks to have co-osts in different rooms - if it appears they are together, they need masks.

Those positions come with extra responsibility. It isn't about "fair."

4 ( +8 / -4 )

this is a very easy problem. put everyone inside a glass that is not just a wall but kinda like a capsule. its not that very expensive for a television company.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

News anchors should never use facial expressions when reading the news. That argument for no mask is rubbish. I’m sure the reasoning behind the news anchors wearing a mask is mostly incentive. There are so many more tv-practical methods such as clear screen between talking head and studio crew, but the wearing of a mask is to inspire the public to be consistent with this.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

We need the Cones of Silence like on Get Smart.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I don't see any need for news presenters to wear masks if they are by themselves. If they are with a co-presenter, then yes.

And Jeff Lee, TV programs can't be broadcast remotely. You do need crew behind the camera, such as sound technicians and engineers, lighting, camera men/women, directors and even make-up people. Reporters can report remotely, sure, but TV stations need on-site staff.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Reminds me of the TV news anchors wearing helmets during the news broadcasts of the Fukushima earthquake and tsunami.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

“ Japan where some people avoid working remotely" because they are too focused on having personal interactions and picking up on nonverbal cues...” Actually most Japanese employees continue working at the office because their employers don’t give them an option to work from home! Our friend who’s not even allowed to leave the company building at lunchtime recently got covid.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Per tested peer reviewed scientific testing.

Surgical Masks cannot filter particles below 500nm (nanometers) and N95 masks cannot filter below 300nm nanometers. The average SARS-COV2 related virus particle is 40-70nm with a maximum size of 120nm. None of the recommendations have been based on scientific testing with live particles and there is more than 16 years of SARS research and info about masks and nanoparticles. There is an article that literally states they tried N95 masks in the field with laser sensors, human test subjects and mannequins and they identified that masks didn't stop nanoparticles and wet masks really didn't stop nanoparticles. They were surprised that in a live environment the air pressure itself was causing the particles to be pushed through the masks. Testing with Flu virions has confirmed this and particles could be confirmed on both sides of the masks. What does this mean? This means people with backgrounds in physics should be explaining this to doctors and not the other way around. All it takes is between 1 and 3 virions (virus particles) to infect a healthy person. We have also studied flu virus particles on airplanes and found that people could be infected before they boarded the plane and once they were on the plane by anyone tracking particles back from the bathroom. All the people in AMOY GARDENS that were downwind of the apartment section where patient zero lived were infected via aerosols.

You can be infected by SARS-COV2 virions via the eyes and the skin. Anywhere there are ACE2 particles which in most of the body and the organs. So if you touch the virus you can be infected even if you do not touch or inhale the virus. Don't believe it? Look up 'CIDRAP AMOY GARDENS 2003'. The first person to warn is was an eye doctor in China. Italian opthamologists wrote a paper about it. Why are they ignoring this fact this many months in is ridiculous.

There are no currently available masks on the market for the public that can filter nanoparticles. If you don't believe me then go look at the picture of the lady scientist that works with SARS viruses and ask yourself what she is wearing. Hint. It's not a mask.
0 ( +5 / -5 )

The central purpose may be promotion and enlightenment of mask use rather than hygiene and prevention from in-house virus spread. Soon they could call for sponsorship to their masks (with company logos on the surface).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

People clearly have too much time on their hands

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

You can not only catch a virus from your computer, but in these days and times, beware, you can catch SARS-coV-2 from watching tv!

make sure you wear a mask watching tv or driving in your car alone.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Why not wear the clear plastic face shields that some people are wearing? That way can still see the faces and for some able to lip read

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

Everybody, including the Starbucks part-timer looks comical with a mask.

I don't know if you've ever been to Japan, but masks are pretty normal, even pre-Covid

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Make sure to wear your masks in the shower, even if you live alone!

3 ( +6 / -3 )

There are no currently available masks on the market for the public that can filter nanoparticles.

@Derrik Smith - thanks for your copy and paste explanation of why you don't think makes work. Surprised you haven't heard that masks are there to stop the spread of COVID in water droplets exhaled. We know full well that most make do not stop the virus entering the body.

2 ( +6 / -4 )


People have the wrong rules. They are wear a mask ANDstay 2m apart. Without a mask - need to be 6m+ apart.

I had contact with a Covid carrier for 3 hours two weeks ago, in a car and we ate lunch together.

I was not infected.

I believe a combination of masks and commonsense meant that a possible infection was on the low side

At the time, I had no idea that the person was infected until a temperature check was done.

I am not advocating contact with a known carrier but ‘in my case’ I have a better idea of how at risk I am now.

0 ( +2 / -2 )


You do need crew behind the camera...,

No you don't. BBC has news studios equipped with unmanned cameras.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Netflix dramas like Bridgerton were filmed during the pandemic, yet the actors are standing on set right next to each other in the filming and they are not wearing masks, therefore spreading the virus and risking lives.

Why are you pretending you don't know that all hollywood-type movie and tv shows shootings are conducted in closed environments with strict and regular testing? Like the NBA, Premier League or other major sports are?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@Ah_so - I am sure you probably read and verified zero scientific literature about SARS since the outbreak started. Maybe you just like being ignorant of published documents or you feel religiously safe behind an item that literally does nothing in the grand scheme of things. There is zero pass-fail testing to support even partial safety and no percentages have been published to support the arguments being made. There is no moral high ground to be had by wearing a mask as it won't prevent aerosols from exiting. If you can test the outside are particles then congratulations you just infected someone.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Back on topic please.

Live by example! These are great role models! They are trying to get the point across to the "knuckleheads" still walking around in public with their face masks below their nose or on their chin.

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To BURNING BUSH, the film industry probably has the most strict covid prevention standards when filming. On many set's the actors are tested daily and the crew 3 time's a week.

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Back on topic please.

@Derrik Smith - TV anchors and other entertainers are social influencers to many people. It has been proven in many ways that masks reduce the transmission of the SARS-COV2 virus. Yes, they don't completely stop the spread. Neither do vaccines. I think it's important for everyone (including TV personalities) to cooperate to reduce the spread of the virus and save lives. If 100% of the population followed the guidelines we could have quickly stopped the pandemic. Unfortunately, there are those who don't. Those few people are actually responsible for the whole problem. @Derrik Smith, do you wear a mask when around other people?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

They at least stop wearing those silly little clear plastic chin/mouth shields, which do absolutely nothing and promote a false sense of security.

Why not wear the clear plastic face shields that some people are wearing? That way can still see the faces and for some able to lip read

The problem is that those do almost nothing to prevent you breathing out the virus. They only really protect from spittle from people who are talking to you. As such, they maybe make sense for workers at reception or in shops who are being spoken to by many customers, but they don't really make sense for tv presenters or ofice staff. Even so, they need to be worn with masks to be remotely effective.

TBH, there's probably little health benefit to in-studio hosts and panelists wearing masks. In other countries it'd still probably be worth it just to promote mask wearing - but pretty much everyone here is already wearing masks.. so there's not really any point, and the drawbacks for deaf people would outweigh any benefits.

When reporters are out and about, or on those boring shows where they walk around and visit restaurants, they should probably be wearing proper face masks.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Acrylic panels don't prevent virus laden dust from the HVAC system from being spread throughout the building. There's not a commercial building anywhere meant for broadcasting that has filtration at the nanoparticle level. If they wanted to wear masks they would need those see through bubble suits if they wanted to keep from psychologically being scarred by seeing unmasked people having a conversation. The international theatrical union I work for isn't letting talent anywhere near them without testing but you can still pass the test and be infected because PCR testing is not reliable.

You would think that with the amount of celebrities that were infected prior to the lockdown that they would have realized how much of a risk there is doing anything live. A ton of shooting for live events was canceled. They could continue to do everything remotely but I am assuming they don't want the whole room to consist of LCD panels like some of the shows or like the horrible WWE events where they tried to continue with no audience.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The mask rules should apply to everybody

What are these “rules” that you cite? Japan has officially recommended the 3 C’s to the public, but those are only recommendations. There is no mask mandate in Japan.

Companies and schools can internally set whatever policies they want. For TV presenters, everything is about public image and trust. A mask makes a person harder to recognize and is a barrier to trust. Fear of COVID, however, has created a distrust of anyone not wearing a mask. TV presenters are caught between these two forces. It’s damaging to image to wear a mask; it’s damaging to public relations not to. They are now reduced to running popularity polls to make the decision for them.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Satoru Masagaki, executive director of broadcasting at public broadcaster NHK, denied during a recent press conference they were needed, saying acrylic panels were put in place in the studios and that reporters "put significant distance between one another."

I haven't seen a single program (nor any other place, for that matter) in Japan, where "significant distance between one another" would have been applied. The acrylic panels yes, but not enough distance, and definitely not a "significant" one.

Comparing the NHK news broadcast to e.g. that of the country where I'm originally from;

in Japan, 1m distance. The news broadcast from back home: around 3-5m distance. Only one presenter is used, and the weather forecaster and possible interviewees stand that 3-5m away from the presenter. With proper equipment and setting, it's not a problem, and looks modern and sleek.

Are the studios too small here then, to actually implement this?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It is impossible for any TV set to be 100% nobody on the set has coronavirus.

It is impossible in any environment where humans interact to be 100 percent certain of zero risk. That’s an absurd standard to demand. I can’t guarantee with 100 percent certainty that I will avoid a car accident, but I still get in my car many times every week. We use the best research and technology to make a situation as safe as possible. It’s always calculated risk.

Therefore by failing to wear a mask at all times they are risking further spread of the virus, putting human lives at risk.

This is also nonsense. Masks are one precaution that may reduce risk in situations where people have to interact closely. Distance from other people and avoiding closed spaces is still vastly more effective. A news presenter could be 10 meters from any other person, and so a mask is not going to change the risk whatsoever.

Not only that but they are also setting a bad example for viewers.

No, they aren’t. Many TV programs have shown viewers how they are distancing on their sets and other precautions they are taking. The rate of mask wearing in Japan is extremely high, and you’d be hard pressed to find a single person who isn’t wearing a mask because a TV presenter didn’t.

If they valued human life more than corporate profits they would have all actors, anchors etc, wear masks at all times.

“If you valued the environment more than your own entertainment, you’d get rid of your CO2-producing phone, computer, and TV right now.” See how absolute either-or rhetoric works? It’s nonsensical hysteria. In the case of TV, they are providing a service that the public enjoys. Nobody wants to watch a movie or drama of people in masks for one or two hours. Media companies have made substantial changes in the past year to make sets safer. TV newsrooms and acting sets have not been major sites of infection, so it would seem that they are valuing human life well.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

first the commercials, now the anchor men on tv, it's just a move to let people accept the mask forever

like the stupids driving a car and have the mask on the face, for what ???

3 ( +3 / -0 )

so have you gone from dismissing masks to now people having to wear them?

It’s a little late to rebrand, as the votes show.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Great news, people will copy what they see on TV.

To the antimaskers spouting off about the mask filters being too big for virus particles, if you go to a loud concert, and wear earplugs, you can still hear the music. The earplugs REDUCE the decibel level of noise that enters your ears.

You might need to read that a few times.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

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