On more than one occasion the MTV program Catfish concluded an episode with the following statement about one of the participants to the show -namely the catfish- and whom I will arbitrarily call "John":
"Despite numerous attempts, John was unable to be reached."
In my opinion, as a non-native English speaker, this sentence is somewhat peculiar. It states as a fact that John is currently unreachable, but the only thing we really know is that MTV Catfish tried to contact this person and these attempts failed. It is certainly possible, and in fact very likely, that John communicates with his friends and family as allways.
Therefore in my humble opinion the following sentence is much preferable:
"Despite numerous attempts, MTV Catfish was unable to reach John."
Am I right? Or am I missing some subtlety of modern English?