Announcing the wrong winner of Miss Universe on live television has to be up there on a pageant host's list of worst nightmares.

Such was the case for this year's host, comedian Steve Harvey, who misread his cue card and declared Miss Colombia, Ariadna Gutierrez, as the winner.

After a quick review, Harvey awkwardly said: "I have to apologise. The first runner-up is Colombia."

He added: "Miss Universe 2015 is Philippines."

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Following the faux pas, an image of the winner's card was shared on Facebook revealing why Harvey was confused.

In Steve Harvey's defense this card is very confusing especially to receive moments before live TV. I didn't even notice Miss Universe 2015 at the bottom. Terrible arrangement.

Posted by Charlamagne Tha God on Sunday, December 20, 2015

Posted by US radio and TV personality, Charlamagne Tha God, the card's layout shows the second, then first runner-up listed down the left side, then to the right, the winner of Miss Universe 2015.

Charlamagne writes: "In Steve Harvey's defense this card is very confusing especially to receive moments before live TV. I didn't even notice Miss Universe 2015 at the bottom. Terrible arrangement."

The post has received almost 5000 comments, many agreeing it was understandable he misconstrued the order.

Trevor W. Riley wrote: "The card is formatted poorly no doubt."

Chester Singleton said: "Well you try getting the results just moments before the announcement and pray you don't screw it up. It doesn't look confusing to us because [we] have time to look and study it."

Several suggested the winner's name should be on a separate card.

Harvey apologised on Twitter for the mistake, telling his followers he feels "terrible".


A string of memes sparked by Harvey's error have also been tweeted:





Do you think the card is confusing? Tell us in the comments below:

- nzherald.co.nz