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What is...In the Media?

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1 hour ago, Prevailing Wind said:

Ooh, that's a must-read; thank you for posting.  It's Cynthia Greenlee's account of being the only Black person in the '95 college tournament:

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I knew that many Black people desired seeing Blackness in front of the blue screens. They would be rooting for me. But I felt little pressure. I have rarely struggled with white ideas of Black inferiority—something a white friend found shocking when I told them some time ago. I grew up in a Black family and institutions that experienced racism and where we discussed white folks ad nauseam. But we never gave credence to the ridiculous idea of white superiority, wherever it reared its ideological head. In fact, we often hewed to an unstated idea of Black superiority, because we—this small nation of people from which I come—have created culture, survived centuries of systematic oppression, and remain the ethical and moral North Stars of this nation.

and how her disappointing but relatively painless loss (in her second game) quickly revealed racist assumptions:
 

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Not long after my second show aired, I was back in my dorm room in Chapel Hill, when the phone rang. My father was sputtering with rage due to a segment on one of those fluffy night “news magazines” that proliferated on late 1990s TV. This one highlighted the eventual winner of the tournament, a white male University of Oklahoma freshman. I turned on my TV to catch the last words.

The show’s theory of why he bested us all? The size of his head, clearly evidence of a larger-than-usual brain and superior intellect.

“They didn’t even measure my head!” was my first thought. On the spot, I jokingly nicknamed us losers The Fellowship of the Wee Crania. Until my face flashed across the screen. Several times.

I wasn’t mentioned by name. There were no direct aspersions about my smarts. Yet the images said it all. "Maybe it wasn’t intended to be racist," I reasoned. But the camera seemed to linger on me. And somehow, it wasn’t a caring or caressing kind of televisual linger, but a visual association with the idea of intellectual inferiority.

The segment was over before I had time to process that I had become a living example of 19th-century pseudoscience at work. A semester before, I’d studied Georges Cuvier's theories of racial taxonomy and scoffed at the "science" of phrenology, which argues that skull bumps and cranium size determine intellect. I had read about the so-called hierarchy of man, which inevitably places people of African descent at the bottom heap of the evolutionary ladder. But I didn’t expect to confront racial poppycock when I went on a modern game show.

Jeopardy! was ostensibly all about the facts. "If I’d passed the test, then I deserved to be there," I reasoned. But suddenly, the racial logic of the past revealed an unpleasant, sticky residue that hadn’t been dissolved by merit and time. The fact was, even though the segment was a collective slam against all but the victor, it was my image that occupied the screen the most. When the correspondent talked seriously about disputed and ugly theories that had been used to say that Black people were barely human and devoid of intellect, that was about me. Not that I didn’t know that racism existed or hadn’t felt its sting, but this was blatant scientific racism broadcast to an audience of potentially millions. I learned in a particularly public and memorable way that no matter how I aced my exam or left my opponents in the dust, I was never going to be qualified enough, meritorious enough, or equal enough for some people.

 

 

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14 hours ago, saber5055 said:

This article published Sept. 20 in The Ringer should be required reading for all J! fans.

Story By Claire McNear

That article is really long, and it gets more and more interesting the whole way through. Thanks for posting it.

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2 hours ago, MrAtoz said:

I thought gawker closed down after Hulk Hogan sued them into bankruptcy.  Why does a current gawker article even exist?

Gawker is a pop-culture website shut down via a lawsuit ruling that caused bankruptcy in 2016 that has been resurrected until history repeats itself. It's recent take on Jeopardy! hosting is, IMO, just an Onion-esque hack job, reminiscent of Mad Magazine, not intended to be taken seriously (see also: nymag.com/intelligencer/article/gawker-returns.html). 
But we fans are nothing if not serious, LOL, so I've copied over relevant posts here to our Media page:

4 hours ago, 853fisher said:

Here is a very strange take from a Gawker blogger who seems to have a lot of baggage to unpack about why "Mayim Bialik is destroying Jeopardy." 

3 hours ago, DrSpaceman73 said:

That gawker article is just completely wrong on just about every level.   

I am not even a big fan of mayim as host but that article is just wrong. 

I don't think anyone wants a comedian hosting this show.   No one like that was even considered.  

Two mentions specifically of mayim and her political beliefs and in particular her Jewish political beliefs.  Go figure an American 40 something Jewish woman is pro Israel. But it doesn't matter to me at all in terms of the host. 

Her description of the contestants is insulting and demeaning. 

I never once thought of jeopardy like some sporting event or like some sad bar trivia contest.  

And no, the show won't listen to her.  Because she is wrong with bad ideas.  I doubt she is a real fan of the show.  

2 hours ago, Roaster said:

Nicole Byer would be inappropriate.   Fun to have at a party maybe but no evidence she would fade into the background the way the Jeopardy! host should.

Marc Maron would be worse.  Every episode of his podcast that I have heard consists of him starting with 20 minutes of self-indulgent ego-stroking before the guest even comes on.  For J!, the more boring the host is, the better.

2 hours ago, saber5055 said:
3 hours ago, DrSpaceman73 said:

That gawker article is just completely wrong on just about every level.   

Which is why I refuse to give it a click to read it.

1 hour ago, Clanstarling said:

Nicole Byer has hosted "Nailed It!" which is a pretty funny show. But a comedian of that ilk on Jeopardy? No way. These two quotes show the utter contempt this person has for the contestants and the fans of the show:

"The integrity of the show relies on having someone at its helm who can make up for the lack of charisma brought by people who are nerdy enough to get on the show in the first place."

"The problem with Bialik and the other people who have been in the running for Jeopardy! host (Ken Jennings and LeVar Burton, most notably) is that they are all people dweebs can get behind."

Well (expletive deleted) her.

 

Edited by shapeshifter

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1 hour ago, shapeshifter said:

just an Onion-esque hack job,

If that was supposed to be funny, it failed.

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15 hours ago, shapeshifter said:

Gawker is a pop-culture website shut down via a lawsuit ruling that caused bankruptcy in 2016 that has been resurrected until history repeats itself.

Thanks.  I knew about the bankruptcy, but not the resurrection.

I suppose I should feel bad about that lawsuit, in an abstract sense--there were shadowy forces behind it giving Hulk Hogan enough money to keep it going, rather than settling as he normally would have, with the deliberate intention of putting gawker out of business--because of the free speech implications that it has.  Gawker was so awful that it's hard to have too much pity for them, but if you can do that to gawker, you can do it to more legitimate sources as well.  So I'm torn.

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On 9/25/2021 at 9:12 AM, MrAtoz said:

-because of the free speech implications that it has.  Gawker was so awful that it's hard to have too much pity for them, but if you can do that to gawker, you can do it to more legitimate sources as well.  So I'm torn.

I agree in principle, but felt there was some anti-Semitic dog whistling festering in this Gawker piece, so I almost feel bad about linking to it here, knowing how SEO works from my past years of website design and coding.

Edited by shapeshifter

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2 hours ago, saber5055 said:

I read on Friday that Matt Amodio will be on GMA Monday morning, Oct. 4.

I read that - I thought here, but apparently not. To sum up the comments, either it means he lost (and didn’t beat James’s record) or he won (and did). I guess we can eliminate one of those possibilities at this point. 

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20 minutes ago, shapeshifter said:

Great article in Matt's words

Yes, great article but the headline is misleading and makes it sound like Matt is all blustery and cocky, like he's going after Ken. Read the article and you will see that headline is taken WAY out of context, that was not really what he meant. The headline made me think "Oh, crap" then the article made me think "That hed writer sucks."

Thanks for posting shapeshifter.

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3 minutes ago, saber5055 said:

headline is misleading

Headlines are often misleading, but this one was ghastly.
My oldest daughter was a journalist for 10 years and said she had no control over the headlines. 
I wonder if it was the same when new was only printed?

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Actually, at the larger newspapers and magazines, headline writers were a separate department and that's all they did, write headlines, while the journalists did interviews and wrote the stories. Side note: In newspaper speak, headlines are heds and the lead is spelled lede. (I've worked many decades with newspaper/magazine editors and writers.)

Anyway, my guess is the author of Matt's article was not the person who wrote that (awful) hed.

Your daughter is a true journalist if she says "more than 10" instead of "over 10." That's this AP writer's pet peeve, and high kudos are given to people who write/say "more than."

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To clarify the headline-writer thing, headlines are written after the stories are in place in the layout, then the hed is written to fit the length: two columns, three columns, four columns and so forth. The font size also is relative to the story's placement on the page and importance on the page. Larger font = less words. So hed writers had full-time jobs.

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Damn it. Paywall. I will take yours all word for it that it's a great article with a bad hed. I like having a winner who's likable.

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2 hours ago, possibilities said:

Damn it. Paywall. I will take yours all word for it that it's a great article with a bad hed. I like having a winner who's likable.

In the U.S. Newsweek is giving 5 free articles per month. 

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13 hours ago, saber5055 said:

. Larger font = less words. So hed writers had full-time jobs.

I know you meant to write "fewer" and not "less."  ;-)

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Just now, Prevailing Wind said:

I know you meant to write "fewer" and not "less."  ;-)

Thank you.

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1 hour ago, Prevailing Wind said:

I know you meant to write "fewer" and not "less."  ;-)

"AP Style holds to the traditional distinction between “fewer” and “less.” This rule states that, in general, you should use “fewer” for individual items, and “less” for bulk or quantity."

Since newspaper heds are in a large quantity through a multi-section edition, I'm sticking with less.

1 hour ago, Trey said:

Thank you.

You're welcome.

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This is a fun thread with multiple replies and responses. (And just a handful of the always-present trolls.)

whoa.png.44b487822e3a685b1b411fbb13e33c47.png

 

 

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Mayim Bialik’s First Week as Temp ‘Jeopardy!’ Host Rises 6% in Ratings From Mike Richards’ Turn

Temporary “Jeopardy!” host Mayim Bialik was welcomed by viewers with open arms. The “Big Bang Theory” alum’s debut as temp host of the syndicated version of the Sony quiz show rose 6% in ratings from the previous week, when Mike Richards had his very short tenure as full-time “Jeopardy!” host.

Bialik’s week, which featured the continuation of Ph.D. student Matt Amodio’s winning streak, also rose 6% from the comparable week last year.

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Did anyone see Matt on GMA Monday? I wondered how the interview went, what questions he was asked (and answered correctly!), and if the interview was in person or via Zoom.

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1 minute ago, saber5055 said:

Did anyone see Matt on GMA Monday? I wondered how the interview went, what questions he was asked (and answered correctly!), and if the interview was in person or via Zoom.

He was there in person. Interview lasted about 2 minutes. He said he was really there to visit his grandfather, so stopping by was convenient. He told Robin when he started on his first game with her on a Wednesday he didn't expect to make it to the next day let alone the end of her week. She commented that he's taking it day by day, to which he responded he takes it question by question. 

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Mayim is doing fine as host, but I also wonder if the rise is partly that BBT fans who were not previous Jeopardy regulars have started watching. 

Either way, I like that Richards wasn't as great of a host as TPTB thought he'd be, ethical considerations aside.

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Thank you @chessiegal and @ProudMary! Cool that his interview was done by one of the many J! hosts he's met. Talk about Seven Degrees of Separation. We'll have to switch out Kevin Bacon for Matt Amodio.

ETA: Thanks so much for the link ProudMary. His interview was wonderful, so much fun. And they asked about some of the stuff that's been talked about here, and Matt explained everything well. Great interview.

Edited by saber5055
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30 minutes ago, possibilities said:

Mayim is doing fine as host, but I also wonder if the rise is partly that BBT fans who were not previous Jeopardy regulars have started watching.

Had the same thought...

I also wonder how much the rise will fall once Matt's run ends. (I'd be skeptical of any numbers while Matt's reigning champ.)

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It took me more than a minute to realize BBT = Big Bang Theory.  I'm used to it meaning Billy Bob Thornton, which made no sense in that context.  LOL

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41 minutes ago, Prevailing Wind said:

It took me more than a minute to realize BBT = Big Bang Theory.  I'm used to it meaning Billy Bob Thornton, which made no sense in that context.  LOL

On TBBT message boards, I think it’s always “TBBT.”

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I think Mayim’s doing great. I also think she’s fortunate to have a record-setting champion increasing viewership in her first weeks. 

If I were a more cynical person, I would think this was planned to give her a boost. (Actually, I am pretty cynical. But I don’t think this was rigged. Just a lucky coincidence.)

Nice humble Newsweek essay by Matt. But his earliest memories of Jeopardy are of Ken Jennings’ run?? What is he, 12? Stop making me feel old, Matt.


 

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2 hours ago, 30 Helens said:

But his earliest memories of Jeopardy are of Ken Jennings’ run?? What is he, 12? Stop making me feel old, Matt.

Matt's 30; Jennings is 47, and began his run in 2004, when Matt was 13 (if I calculated correctly). Yeah, I'm old!

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On 10/7/2021 at 6:04 PM, shapeshifter said:

I adore Matt for his epic sense of humour... e.g., when he claps back at James:

"Must be nice having time to throw shade on Twitter. Us #Jeopardy champions with 0 career losses have actual work to do."

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14 hours ago, Bliss said:

I adore Matt for his epic sense of humour... e.g., when he claps back at James:

My favorite was when James posted a photo showing him on the left with 34 wins and Matt on the right with 34 wins with money totals being "rather different."

Matt wrote back "I thought the rule for memes was the better looking person is always on the left." (paraphrasing) Burn!

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1 hour ago, saber5055 said:

My favorite was when James posted a photo showing him on the left with 34 wins and Matt on the right with 34 wins with money totals being "rather different."

Matt wrote back "I thought the rule for memes was the better looking person is always on the left." (paraphrasing) Burn!

Agreed. That one was perfection... and his response to a Smokey (the) Bear comment... "ONLY YOU..." (sorry, can't remember the rest of what he wrote) made me laugh so hard, my dog gave me one of those "are you ok?" looks.

He has a priceless inner comedian. It'll serve him well as he ages.

 

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This morning's NY Times has an article on Mayim. If anyone has used up all of their 5 free NYT articles for the month in all of their browsers (Chrome, Safari, Edge, etc.) and does not want to (or learn how to) clear their cache but does want to read the article, message me an email address, and I can send the article (the subscription I get through the college where I have emeritus status allows me to send 5 free "gift" articles per month).
Anyway, here's the link and a copyright law-appropriate amount of the article: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/10/11/arts/television/mayim-bialik-jeopardy.html

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...Scrutiny of her many past statements has now become the latest chapter in the saga that is the game show’s attempts to find a host who sticks.

“Right now we’ve got someone absolutely free of controversy, Mayim Bialik,” John Oliver joked on a recent episode of “Last Week Tonight,” going on to describe her as “a person I think is great because I don’t have Google.”

 

Likewise, message me an email if you want to see this article and can't:
"Matt Amodio’s ‘Jeopardy!’ Streak Ends After 38 Wins" 
nytimes.com/2021/10/11/arts/television/matt-amodio-jeopardy-streak-over.html
--although there's nothing significant about it other than it being in the NY Times.

 

Edited by shapeshifter
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Matt Amodio now has a Wikipedia page about him, which is a status symbol.  It shows his current age is 30, which is more proof for my theory that 30 is the best age to be on Jeopardy.

If we look at the players with the longest streaks and how old they were when they started their streaks:

Ken Jennings - 74 games - age 30
Matt Amodio - 38 games - age 30
James Holzhauer - 32 games - age 34
Julia Collins - 20 games - age 31
David Madden - 19 games - age 34
Jason Zuffranieri - 19 games - age 43

My hypothesis for why this is true:  Young contestants (e.g. college students) are very quick to come up with the answer, but they don't know enough because they are young.  Old players know more trivia but their brains take an extra second or two to come up with the answer.

30 is the Goldilocks age sweet spot when you know enough trivia but are still fast.
 

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6 hours ago, Roaster said:

30 is the Goldilocks age sweet spot when you know enough trivia but are still fast.

And you can still remember some things you learned in school.

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Matt was on CNBC this morning with David Faber and Jim Cramer.  He was gracious as always.  He plans to finish his PhD by the end of this school year and will look for a job as a professor.  They talked about investing his winnings, and he says he wants to invest for the long term in fairly safe funds and bonds.  He isn't planning on touching any of it right now.  

Cramer was like a fangirl talking about his run on Jeopardy and how it got his daughters watching every night.  It was pretty funny.

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Wonder how much of that $1.5 million Matt will actually receive after federal and state taxes?

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2 hours ago, laredhead said:

Wonder how much of that $1.5 million Matt will actually receive after federal and state taxes?

Not just state and federal.  LA County gets a cut too.  And both CA and CT if I am not mistaken.  I think he will end up getting about half of it.  Which is why I wanted him to hit 2 million.

Edited by 3 is enough
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3 hours ago, 3 is enough said:

 I think he will end up getting about half of it.

This is very close to true. Whenever anyone gets all excited about winning $10,000 on a game show, in my mind I think "It's really only $5,000 IRL." Good on Matt for investing and using it wisely, and continuing on with his pre-Jeopardy plan. I'd pay extra tuition if I could take a class (or two) from him. I'm thinking he should easily find a teaching position IF the dean of that college isn't threatened by someone smarter than, well, everyone there.

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