The decision to tell contestants on the German version of Big Brother live on air about the coronavirus pandemic has been slammed by an expert who says they will find the news “incredibly confusing”.
Contestants first went onto the show on February 6, when news of the virus was just breaking in Wuhan, China.
Four further contestants were introduced a month later on March 6, three days before German’s first death from coronavirus, but were instructed not to tell their housemates about what was going on in the outside world.
Broadcaster Sat.1 initially weren’t planning to tell the 12 men and women on the show but following criticism on social media, they will break the news in tonight’s live show, where they will also receive video messages from friends and family.
Craig Jackson, Professor of Occupational Health Psychology at Birmingham City University commented: “Well, do we expect anything better from this misery-franchise? I wish I could learn to speak German today for when they tell the contestants!
“I imagine some of the contestants will find this incredibly confusing and may even suspect it is a ‘game’ the producers are playing and may go along with it believing it to be a fiction. That will be quite something if it happens.
There could be a chance that some of the contestants’ relatives or family may be ill and suffering.
“They are in an environment of distrust and caginess and why would they believe that something as incredible as ‘worldwide pandemic hits Germany’ would be the truth.
“Of course, there could be a chance that some of the contestants’ relatives or family may be ill and suffering. They would hopefully have been told if that were the case. It is a shame that the outbreak is being used by the show to get viewer increases.”
The German housemates are already split up into two houses, with one group enjoying a hot tub and luxury food items while the other group are in a basic house with bare necessities.
Contestants on Big Brother Canada and Brazil are also in the dark about the spread of coronavirus.
The Canadian housemates are already wondering why they can’t hear the crowd outside when someone gets evicted.
Meanwhile in the UK, millions of people are being told to cocoon themselves inside their homes in the fight against the coronavirus crisis.
Addressing the media at Downing Street yesterday (Monday, March 16) afternoon, Prime Minister Boris Johnson outlined strict new guidelines from the Government calling for everyone to cease all non-essential travel and curb contact with each other amid the outbreak.
The PM urged all Brits, around 66.4million, to stay away from pubs, nightclubs, theatres and cinemas for the forseeable future, while those able to work from home should do so.
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