Jeopardy’s Double Standard

By now, you may have heard about Thomas Hurley III and his “incorrect” answer on final Jeopardy where he spelled Emancipation Proclamation wrong, and wasn’t given credit for because of it.  In case you missed it, here’s the video:

Yes, he did misspell it, but apparently Alex isn’t the best speller either since he said, “You put a ‘P’ in there.”  Yes, Alex, there is a ‘P’ in there, but unfortunately, he put an extra ‘T’, which is why it was misspelled.  Perhaps, if you’re going to chastise a kid for “misspelling it badly” you should know what you’re talking about.

Jeopardy has been under fire for this lately, and their producers responded by saying:

If ‘Jeopardy!’ were to give credit for an incorrect response (however minor), the show would effectively penalize the other players.  We love presenting young people as contestants on our show and make every effort to be fair and consistent in their treatment.


Many people may not agree with this, but if it’s their rule, I don’t have a problem with them enforcing it.  However, I was on YouTube the other day, and found another Jeopardy contestant who was slightly off with his final answer.

Apparently the YouTube user deleted his profile and this video, but I like to think that it is because Jeopardy was scared that I was poking holes in their logic behind Hurley’s incorrect answer.  The contestant in the video answered the Final Jeopardy question with “The Bridge Over the River Kwai.”  The problem with this is that the movie was titled “The Bridge ON the River Kwai.”  He got an entire WORD wrong in his answer, but was still credited with a correct answer because it was “close enough”.  Call me crazy, but I think this “minor” incorrect response was much worse than adding one extra letter to a word.  Perhaps Kids Week wasn’t the time to play bully, Jeopardy.


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