‘Haters gon hate’ – TV reporters use press access to ‘beat the crowds’ at store’s grand opening

haleyhernandezWhile hundreds of people waited outside the new H&M store on King Street Thursday – some started waiting as early as 4:30 a.m. – local reporters covering the grand opening meaghanwallacewere getting a sneak peek at the deals inside during a press-only function.

A couple were also taking advantage of the deals, using their jobs as reporters to ‘beat the crowds.’ One of them wasn’t even on the clock at the time

How do we know? They tweeted about it.

“Haters gon hate,” tweeted WCBD Channel 2′s Haley Hernandez.

“I indulged,” tweeted WCSC Channel 5′s Meaghan Wallace.

A few journalists who saw the tweets told me they were shocked that not only would reporters use their access to get first crack at the deals but that they would brag about it on social media.

Hernandez and Wallace confirmed they bought the clothes.


12:50 p.m. update: Hernandez has since tweeted that she wasn’t working when she used her job as a reporter to shop inside hours before the crowds waiting outside.


So what do you think? If you were one of the hundreds of people who waited in line would you be upset that reporters were using their press passes to slide in ahead of you or do you consider that a perk for journalists, even non-working ones?

Some early feedback:


9 thoughts on “‘Haters gon hate’ – TV reporters use press access to ‘beat the crowds’ at store’s grand opening

  1. How nice .. I believe the news/story would have been with those that had been standing outside for hours. I don’t began to understand people that feel the need to “camp out” before a store opens, but to have TV personalities use the “influence” does not help their standing in the community. Of course in the scheme of life, this is just small part. So two news people decide to show their Christmas ” I am special” spirit. What goes around, comes around and I can’t wait to hear their come back on what is going to be their “come around.”

  2. That’s as bad as the people that want to get out of their cars and walk up to the front of the store when the lines start moving on Black Friday. I am glad to say that I have seen many stores starting to implement procedures to stop this from happening. Those reporters are no different from any other shopper, especially if they were not on duty or reporting a story. They used professional credentials for private gain. Seems to me like they should be stripped of their press passes for awhile….6 months or so sounds fair. Then we can see if the TV stations will keep them on the payroll when they can’t report on anything. If nothing else, it should weigh on their conscience that what they did was wrong. Oh wait, you have to have a conscience for that to happen. Oh well.

  3. I don’t see an issue. Yea it’s frustrating to the people in line but media is about money and saving money.

    H&M offers early access, then that reporter will tweet organically about their experience and give them publicity, for free.

    Looks like it already did according to this article and all the buzz around it.

  4. Just my advice, they shouldn’t have tweeted what they said but came more across as a journalist getting a sneak-peek, not bragging rights that they beat everyone.

  5. More than anything I was really curious about the public’s take on this. Very interesting to see that public opinion appears to be as split as the opinion among TV journalism and print journalism, though I have seen people in print say they don’t see anything wrong with it and I’ve seen TV reporters cringe about it.

  6. You make all reporters like me get looked upon poorly. You embarrass us. Shame on you.

  7. It’s an absolute shame that the reporters who used their media access to shop don’t realize that what they did was ethically wrong. It is also unfortunate that their tweets expose them for the brain-impaired, immature little girls they are. These are the people entrusted to deliver news in 2013. What a shame.