Man Loses $3,200 for Mispronouncing “Gangsta”
Look. The year is 2018. We can no longer beg ignorance for the terms of the day. We can no longer be philistines in the world of rap and the titles of rap songs. We must be vigilant! We must be respectful of the artist’s intent! We must call the song what it is — Gangsta’s Paradise Lost! Not Gangster’s Paradise Lost, as this poor Jeopardy contestant learned after questioning the answer — “A Song by Coolio Goes Back In Time To Become A 1667 John Milton Classic.” It sounds like they’re mashing up classic literature and music. The response — as Nick was happy to answer — “Gangster’s Paradise Lost.” Seems like he won, right? However, the points were taken away! Gangsta’s Paradise Lost, Nick, Gangsta’s Paradise Lost!
The Jeopardy board actually responded to people’s inevitable conversation of this, explaining their thinking —
Although Nick’s response of “Gangster’s Paradise Lost” was initially accepted, the hard R sound caught the ear of one member of the onstage team, who immediately followed up with a quick check. It turns out that “gangsta” and “gangster” are both listed separately in the Oxford English Dictionary, each with its own unique definition. Nick changed not only the song’s title but also its meaning – making his response unacceptable.
Sorry, Nick! If you don’t like what happened, take it up with the dictionary… the Oxford Dictionary!