What is an unfortunate choice of words?
NBC News is scoring online backlash following a now-viral piece they wrote about history-making “Jeopardy!” champ Mattea Roach.
Roach, 23, has been on a winning streak on the classic game show, emerging as the victor of 17 consecutive games with a grand prize total of $396,182 as of Wednesday.
NBC shared a tweet Monday promoting their article about Roach’s win, writing: “The 23-year-old lesbian tutor from Toronto has amassed a total of $320,081, the most by a Canadian contestant in ‘Jeopardy!’ history.”
The phrasing elicited some angry responses from fans for explicitly pointing out that Roach was part of the LGBTQ+ community. “Is her sexual orientation really relevant here?” one asked.
“Try this: Congratulations to Mattea Roach, Canadian tutor, for her amassed sum of $320,081, the most won by a Canadian contestant in ‘Jeopardy!’ history,” one person chimed in.
Another penned: “And somehow, in all the coverage of Mattea here in Canada, not once has her sexuality been mentioned…because it doesn’t have anything to do with her success on ‘Jeopardy!’”
“I will so enjoy the day when posts highlighting someone’s sexuality are a thing of the past. What the hell does it have to do with the show or her profession? Mattea is doing awesome and making her home town and country proud! Let’s leave it at that,” a user said.
One unimpressed viewer suggested, “Do better. Please. Was Ken Jennings or James Holzhauer described as heterosexual contestants?????”
As of now, NBC News hasn’t addressed the backlash tweet, which is still posted on its Twitter account as of Thursday morning.
When the Canadian native scored her 14th win on Friday, April 22, she made history in the “Jeopardy!” record books by becoming eighth on the all-time consecutive games list, and 10th on the all-time highest non-tournament cash winnings list.
“This has been such a crazy season of streaks, and I was fully thinking Amy [Schneider] might still be here,” Roach said in a statement, referencing the 43-year-old prior champ who made history in January by winning her 39th game and becoming No. 2 on the all-time consecutive wins list.
“If it’s not Amy, there’s going to be some other super champion that’s just going to knock me out Game 1,” she continued. “I guess what I didn’t realize is maybe I could become the super champion I wanted to see in the world.”