BET Apologizes for Muting Usher’s Acceptance Speech at BET Awards

BET has issued an apology to Usher for muting a large part of his acceptance speech last night at the BET Awards.

Usher was on hand to accept the Lifetime Achievement Award at Peacock Theater in Los Angeles, shortly after an all-star tribute to the singer from Childish Gambino, Victoria Monét, Coco Jones and many more. He began his speech by remarking that he had not prepared any words to share, but that he “likes to talk.” From there, he began swearing, and the audio cut out for almost four minutes of the 13-minute speech.

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“Due to an audio malfunction during the LIVE telecast, portions of his speech were inadvertently muted,” shared BET in a statement to Billboard. “Celebrating global icon Usher on our stage with a star-studded tribute and having him accept his award with a heartfelt speech was an honor… We extend our sincere apologies to Usher as we couldn’t be more grateful for his participation in Culture’s Biggest Night.”

Speculation ran wild on social media as to why Usher’s speech was censored, with many deducing that it had to do with profanity. Some theorized that he was talking about his relationship with Sean “Diddy” Combs, though that was swiftly debunked by those in attendance and by an uncensored clip of the full speech posted to YouTube on BET’s account this morning.

Antonio “L.A.” Reid and Babyface, who co-founded LaFace Records and signed the singer at a young age, presented the honor to Usher who stood on stage with his mentor Jermaine Dupri among others.

BET will rebroadcast the award show tonight at 8 p.m. ET. Check out the full speech below.

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