A job interview is nerve wracking enough as it is, but imagine being mistakenly interviewed on live TV?
And as a tech expert at that! For Guy Goma, a mix up at what would have been an ordinary job interview made him an internet sensation and he is still remembered today.
On the 100th anniversary of the BBC, a funny incident that happened on BBC News started making the rounds again on Reddit and Twitter.
Goma, a Congolese computer technician, was waiting in the main reception area of the BBC Television Centre for his job interview as accountant for the IT department.
Suddenly he was whisked into a makeup room and then into the studio. He was apparently mistaken for a tech expert who was about to be interviewed on live television!
Just five minutes before the interview, a producer approached Goma and asked about his identity.
He was immediately escorted to the News 24 studio, given makeup, and then hurried to the broadcast studio and linked to a microphone in front of the cameras.
All along, Goma thought the situation was a bit odd, but he thought he was still about to do a job interview. During the studio interview, however, the television anchor Karen Bowerman introduced Goma as Guy Kewney.
Imagine his shock when the news anchor said, “Guy Kewney is the editor of the technology website Newswireless. Good morning to you.” Goma was obviously surprised but decided to just go with the interview since they were on live television.
After a few questions, Bowerman herself realized that the man she was talking to was not the tech expert they planned for the interview.
Still, Goma handled the unexpected situation calmly and admirably, thus becoming one of the internet’s most famous icons.
Meanwhile, Kewney, the real tech expert, was surprised to see Goma being interviewed, although he couldn’t hear the audio. He was still waiting at the reception area when the interview came on.
He had been asked to do the live television interview to discuss Apple Computer’s legal dispute with the Beatles’ record label, Apple Corps.
When the producer went to retrieve him, the receptionist had mistakenly pointed to Goma, who was then brought into the television studio.
During the interview, Goma remained composed and professional as he tried to answer the questions as the tech expert he was thought to be.
When asked about the Apple case, he said, “Actually, if you can go everywhere you’re gonna see a lot of people downloading through the Internet and the website, everything they want. But I think is much better for development and…eh…to improve people what they want, and to get on the easy way, and so faster the things they looking for.”
He obviously had little knowledge of the subject matter, but since the show was live, the interview just kept on going.
The anchor ended the discussion by asking if he was surprised by the final verdict in the case. Goma, the mistaken tech expert, tactfully answered “I’m very surprised to see this verdict come on me. I was not expecting that.”
Twenty minutes after the studio broadcast, Goma had a chance to do his real job interview. Despite his composure under stress though, he was unfortunately not hired.
Still, Goma shot to instant fame after this unexpected turn as a “tech expert.” He was later interviewed by the BBC about the funny incident, and now 16 years later, it remains one of BBC’s greatest moments.
Goma may have been at the wrong place at the right time, but he was able to make the best of a difficult situation.
He is now part of television history and this now infamous awkward moment on BBC has garnered millions of views on YouTube and is regularly shared for fun on all social media platforms. Goma will be an internet legend forever!
Check out Goma’s interview below: