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Here’s how The Bachelorette viewers changed COVID-19 protocol in the middle of the live finale

Kaitlyn Bristowe in sparkly dress
The Bachelorette finale had a masked audience thanks to viewers. Pic credit: ABC

The Bachelorette Season 18 finale had fans feeling warm and fuzzy over witnessing Michelle Young and Nayte Olukoya get engaged.

However, the finale also had fans feeling understandably hot and bothered for safety reasons among the studio audience. 

The Bachelorette viewers helped enforce safety precautions during the finale 

For the first time in a while, The Bachelorette finale was filmed live which meant that The Bachelorette fans could react to the show in real-time. 

The Bachelorette viewers quickly noticed that the studio audience behind Kaitlyn Bristowe was unmasked which was concerning considering the ongoing pandemic and current surge of the virus. 

Many took to social media to express their disapproval of the studio audience not being required to wear masks, finding it to be irresponsible and a potential super spreader event. 

With an abundance of messages commenting about the safety issue, the concern appeared to have reached producers who made safety adjustments mid-show. 

Those who watched The Bachelorette finale will recall that Kaitlyn took a moment during the show to directly address viewers at home and acknowledge their concerns as well as inform them of the protocol they’re following. 

Kaitlyn stated, “We have seen a lot of chatter online, so just so we’re clear, everyone around me has tested negative. But just to exercise additional caution, our audience will remain masked throughout the rest of the show.”

While some The Bachelorette viewers felt the show shouldn’t have budged by making the studio audience wear masks, most The Bachelorette fans felt proud that their voices led to the show taking action and enforcing masks within the audience.

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Tayshia Adams’ absence from the finale was COVID-19 related 

The pandemic has impacted The Bachelor franchise in several ways over the last two years. Along with limiting travel during the seasons and reducing the live shows, COVID-19 also played a part in why Tayshia was a no-show during The Bachelorette Season 18 finale. 

Just hours before the finale would air, Tayshia revealed that she had come in contact with COVID-19 in some capacity and so, in an effort to be extra cautious and mindful, Tayshia would stay home and leave the hosting duties to her cohost Kaitlyn Bristowe. 

As the pandemic continues on, time will tell how The Bachelor franchise continues to adjust and address safety precautions. 

The Bachelorette is currently on hiatus on ABC. 

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