Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Nick Jr. discriminates against Christians, George Bush

What an odd title for a blog post, huh? On Nick Jr.'s website, there is a game called "Free Draw" in which you can type words. It blocks words that are deemed inappropriate for children, such as cuss words. But... it also blocks Christ, Christmas, Christian, Pope, God, Jew... and George Bush and Dick Cheney! And it gets worse... it allows the words Kwanzaa, Hannukah, Ramadan, Mohammed... and Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, and Al Gore. It even blocks the word "bush" (lowercase), yet it will not block the word "shrub."

I find it disturbing that some programmer at Nick Jr. wants to stick his personal bias in a game for kids. I could maybe believe that some of the religious words were accidental, but when proper names of some politicians are allowed while others are blocked... that shows a clear intent. How disturbing that somebody is doing this on a kids' game... uggh.

As a Catholic, I find it pretty offensive that Pope and Mass are blocked. I can understand Virgin Mary being blocked, as some would find the word "virgin" inappropriate for children. But Pope? Why?

If you want to complain or ask for an explanation, go to http://www.viacom.com/contact/Pages/default.aspx. If you want to try the game out on your own and see what other words it will block, you can find it on Nick Jr.'s website.


mel said...

Oh my gosh, that's so crazy!!! I can't wait to see if someone gets a response!

Meghan said...

wow...i'm sad to say i am not really surprised. I find it harder and harder to be Catholic in this world.

Bridgette said...

Well, I see no reason for mass or Pope to be blocked but I think the word "bush" may be blocked because of it's slang connotations. That's actually not that uncommon.

Bridgette (again) said...

Same goes for V.P. Cheney. Think about his first name, or his nickname, I should say. Bust Christmas should definitely come up! Does it block "Jesus?"

Erin said...

Yeah, that does make sense. I just can't figure out why it blocked Mass, Pope, and Christmas. It blocked Jesus and God as well. Somebody mentioned that it probably blocked Mass because it contains the word "ass," which I think is a stretch! And it doesn't explain at all why Pope and Jew are blocked. Maybe Christ, Jesus, and God were blocked because of the possibility of them being used as profanity?

But last I checked, Free Draw is now set to not block anything at all... you can type in cuss words now. So their solution apparently was to take off the filter completely - odd.