TV presenters are still adapting to the new normal in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, with The One Show offering the latest example of how times have changed.
While the chatshow is known for its cozy atmosphere (perhaps too cozy at times!), presenters and guests huddled close together for a lively chat now raises some serious red flags for viewers in the era of social distancing.
Thursday's (March 19) edition of The One Show featured Alex Jones and guest presenter Patrick Kielty opening the show side-by-side as usual. This stuck viewers as odd, and they made their complaints known.
Numerous viewers tweeted begging Alex and Patrick not to "sit so close" to one another, while another called the format "totally unnecessary" and one demanded they "show some leadership".
By the time The One Show came back from its first VT, Alex addressed the complaints by visibly moving away from Patrick on-camera to appease viewers.
"We are having a lot of emails about social distancing and the fact that we're quite close together," Alex revealed. "We hear you, and we've moved farther apart."
The presenter then admitted: "It's just hard to break habits, isn't it? That's what it is. We're so used to sitting, but yeah, [viewers] are absolutely right."
Below are a few of the complaints that led up to the remarkable on-air social distancing:
#theoneshow BBC production team absolutely clueless regarding Social Distancing... Unbelievable Stupidity..— AdamDitch (@AdamDitch) March 19, 2020
Why is this programme still broadcasting ? Totally unnecessary. Five people all sitting close together who don't even need to be there telling us to socially distance ourselves from each other #theoneshow— joanne bentley (@ticklemythighs) March 19, 2020
The One Show has been struck by the wave of self-isolation in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, with Alex's co-host Matt Baker announcing this week that he'd be staying at home for two weeks.
Though he initially said he was asymptomatic, Matt admitted during Thursday's episode that he was feeling worse and had started developing a dry cough – though he was not at all confirming he had COVID-19.
The One Show airs Mondays through Fridays at 7pm on BBC One.
The information in this story is accurate as of the publication date. While we are attempting to keep our content as up-to-date as possible, the situation surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic continues to develop rapidly, so it's possible that some information and recommendations may have changed since publishing.
For any concerns and latest advice, visit the World Health Organisation. If you're in the UK, the National Health Service can also provide useful information and support, while US users can contact the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
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