The segment featured a composite image that shows Franklin in the foreground and a faded, smaller image of LaBelle in the upper right corner.
“We sincerely apologize to Aretha Franklin’s family and friends,” Jessica Santostefano, Fox News’ vice president, media desk, said in a statement. “Our intention was to honor the icon using a secondary image of her performing with Patti LaBelle in the full screen graphic, but the image of Ms. Franklin was obscured in that process, which we deeply regret.”
What makes the apology so perplexing is that the image of LaBelle used in the video for Franklin is one of LaBelle performing by herself.
The image of LaBelle is from the 2014 event “Women of Soul: In Performance at the White House.” While it featured the likes of Franklin along with Melissa Etheridge, Patti LaBelle, Jill Scott, Janelle Monáe, Tessanne Chin and Ariana Grande, at no time did Franklin and LaBelle share the stage.
Here’s an image of LaBelle from that night that looks similar to the one Fox News used.
Santostefano noted that Franklin’s name is in the description of the image, but it’s pretty clear that the singer herself is not in the photo.
For reference, here’s how Franklin looked — and sounded — that evening.
The “Chain of Fools” singer even snubbed LaBelle that night and refused her touch when the two passed one another. So Fox News’ excuse that they wanted to include an image of the iconic singers performing together seems ... off.
Most outlets have made a mistake on a photo or caption at some point in time, but Fox News’ supposed explanation raises more questions than it answers.
BEFORE YOU GO
How to vote
Vote-by-mail ballot request deadline: Varies by state
For the Nov 3 election: States are making it easier for citizens to vote absentee by mail this year due to the coronavirus. Each state has its own rules for mail-in absentee voting. Visit your state election office website to find out if you can vote by mail.Get more information
In-person early voting dates: Varies by state
Sometimes circumstances make it hard or impossible for you to vote on Election Day. But your state may let you vote during a designated early voting period. You don't need an excuse to vote early. Visit your state election office website to find out whether they offer early voting.My Election Office
General Election: Nov 3, 2020
Polling hours on Election Day: Varies by state/localityMy Polling Place