Jeopardy 'Emancipation' misspelling goes viral

Jeopardy 'Emancipation' misspelling goes viral
Thomas Hurley III (CNN/Jeopardy)

Thomas Hurley III became a viral sensation after his unfortunate misspelling of the right answer during Wednesday's Kids Week episode on "Jeopardy."

Thomas, 12, knew the correct response to Jeopardy's final question: Abraham Lincoln called this document, which took effect in 1863, "a fit and necessary war measure."


But the eighth-grader lost after he added an extra "t" to his answer: "emanciptation proclamation."

Host Alex Trebek said Thomas "misspelled it badly" and added that "the judges are ruling against you." At the time, Thomas was in second place with $9,600 and bet $3,000 on the question. For making it to second place he still got to keep $2,000, but his father was still not pleased with the ruling.

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"The thing that bothered me most was the way Alex Trebek and the producers treated my son. They were kind of smug," his father, Thomas Hurley II, told CNN on Sunday night. "It's a kids' tournament! Everyone knew what he meant."

Though the show was recorded back in February it aired for the first time Wednesday.

"[He] was barely holding together," his dad said. "He was almost in tears. He had to relive it on Wednesday."


Over 1,300 people have commented on the clip of the night's winner posted on the Jeopardy! Facebook page, and while some believe Thomas was cheated, others agree that it was the right to do.

"Not fair what happened to that child... On a previous show last year a gentlemen spelled Hannibal Lecter WRONG and was given credit by the producers. TERRIBLE TERRIBLE TERRIBLE," Jason Altman wrote.

"It was not a correct answer if it was mispelled. Life is tough, learn it now. And tell the self entitling mother to keep out of it. Does he want welfare and food stamps too?" Mark G. Crouthers responded.

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