Fort Worth City Councilman Joel Burns had a legitimate reason to be angry at the Weather Channel. The cable channel’s iPhone app, which displays photos of the city for which it’s giving the forecast as the background, shows pictures of Dallas when you look up Fort Worth’s weather.
Burns tweeted at the @weatherchannel handle multiple times over the past few weeks, threatening to delete the app if it didn’t start displaying photos of Fort Worth. Eventually, he tweeted that he had deleted the app, with a picture to prove it.
The Weather Channel replied to his tweet with what reads like a sarcastic snipe at the councilman. Burns is openly gay and made headlines with an impassioned “It Gets Better” speech
at a 2010 council meeting.
Burns responded, retweeting the response and simply asking again that The Weather Channel fix its app, but quite a few other respondents called for the channel’s social media person to be fired because of that reply.
Eventually, The Weather Channel tweeted an apology.
It also issued a statement to The Wrap
This morning one of our team members used sarcasm in an unfortunate and unacceptable way on our Twitter account. It was not our intention to offend and we are sorry that we did. We have since apologized to Councilman Burns and want to restate that sincere apology and assure him that this tweet does not represent our views. In fact, this is the opposite of how we want to interact with our fans, as we value their input on any occasion. We are taking the necessary steps to be sure something like this does not occur again.
Later in the day, Burns posted a video challenging The Weather Channel to come to Fort Worth and see that it isn’t Dallas. He also asked the channel to donate $100,000 to an anti-bullying charity.
The Weather Channel does not appear to have publicly responded to the challenge.