BBC defends decision to blur Kenyan social media star’s cleavage to avoid offending viewers

Glamour Pam
Glamour Pam’s cleavage was obscured for the episode of The She Word. Photo: BBC

BBC executives have defended the decision to blur the cleavage of a Kenyan social media star in a new documentary about fake news and online fame.

In the BBC Africa programme The She Word entitled “Fake Me: Living For Likes”, Kenyan interviewee Glamour Pam had part of her chest blurred in an effort to avoid offending viewers in some of the more conservative countries across the continent which have stricter broadcasting rules than the UK.

As well as Kenya, seven other African countries – including Nigeria and Malawi – have partnered with the BBC to show The She Word  which was launched at the end of September and billed as an exploration of the life experiences of women across the continent.

During the programme, the makeup artist and Instagram star was seen helping a social media novice look “fleek” in order to gain more followers, but when she is see facing the camera,  her cleavage is artificially concealed.

According to The Guardian, the decision to conceal her cleavage was made at a “senior editorial level” at BBC Africa.

One of the show’s producers reportedly told BBC colleagues that editors had attempted to get round the perceived problem by zooming in on Glamour Pam’s face, but “in some shots, particularly the wide shots, we were unable to do this and so had to blur”.

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