Wii game Countdown exposes three-year-old to 'shitheads'

The Wii game Countdown, based on a UK game show of the same name, is rated for players age three and up by the European game ratings board. And yet when three-year-old Oliver Smith was playing the game with his mom, something very un-kid-friendly popped up on the screen.

One round in the game presents players with a series of jumbled letters, and asks them to figure out the word that's been jumbled up. In this case, the letters were SHAHSITED.

Above: He loves it

Oliver's mom Victoria picks up the story from there. "I couldn't believe my eyes as the word was slowly unveiled as an obscene insult," she said in a local news interview.

Little Oliver asked his parents what the word meant, when, "My husband Daniel had to rush him out of the room," said Victoria. "Oliver is a really bright kid and we play this game to help him build up his word bank."

We're assuming the developers just mass-collected a bunch of words and threw them in a database, mistakenly missing certain inappropriate entries. Probably should have had an intern look over it first.

Also, "rush him out of the room?" What, so he's not forever corrupted by a word on a screen? Pssst, guys, he's standing right there for the photo op.

[Source: The Sun]

Feb 10, 2011




  • RandyChimp - February 11, 2011 7:25 p.m.

    Am I a bad person for thinking that, if I had a kid and that came up on screen, I'd start laughing when he or she asked what it meant? Seriously, it'd just be funny.
  • rabidpotatochip - February 11, 2011 1:40 p.m.

    You know, it saddens me that there are so many stories about how video games are ruining people's lives or generally getting them up in arms recently. There have always been people saying stupid things about games for as long as they've existed (e.g. D&D is actually summoning Satan, a real conversation I had) but mistakes like this really add fuel to their fires. I mean, how hard is it to filter your database for "shit"?
  • fatcat6 - February 11, 2011 12:32 p.m.

    I bet this is going to get blown into the next "games cause vulgar language in kids" controversy ... sigh lol btw
  • nomnom52 - February 11, 2011 4:54 a.m.

    @Carolyn: I think that's actually the remote holder on top of the 360. And I agree. The kid's pretty damn cute.
  • Chanel21 - February 11, 2011 3:19 a.m.

    First of all, that kid is SUPER adorable. I thought he was a doll at first :). Also, if this happened to me or my family I think we would have laughed for a long ass time, then moved on. It's not a big deal...Shithead :P
  • Arix - February 11, 2011 1:35 a.m.

    People are idiots. First of all, swearing. Why is it such a big deal? They're just words, like any other. The only reason they're considered offensive is because people arbitrarily decide to find them offensive - circular logic at its finest. As for these crazy people, you did perhaps the worst possible thing. No matter how well you may have raised your kid, making such a big fuss over it like this ("Rushing him out of the room"? Seriously?), will just pique his interest in the word. Just say something like "It's a word that we don't use because some people don't like it". And BAM, the kid knows it's bad (and if you've raised him well, he then won't act on it because he knows it's bad), and you haven't made him curious by making such a big deal of it. By the next round of the game, he's forgotten all about it. I say again: People are idiots.
  • CongratulagentAgentTHEAgentAntista - February 11, 2011 1:21 a.m.

    D'aaaw he's like a little baby Bill Murray.
  • EnragedTortoise1 - February 11, 2011 12:13 a.m.

    You know what'd be hilarious? If this was a big f*king deal. Oh. Wait.
  • Memph - February 11, 2011 12:11 a.m.

    Yay, another 'news' article, further proving some people really should require a license to breed. Oh noes bad words will corrupt my little Olly! That kid's gonna have to be really good when the time comes to hide his porn with a mom like that.
  • Darth_Griffin - February 11, 2011 12:01 a.m.

  • Turboash - February 10, 2011 11:29 p.m.

    What the heck is a SHITH EAD?
  • RicePuddingUK - February 10, 2011 11:22 p.m.

    "Rush him out the room"? But there's a PICTURE OF HIS POSING WITH IT!! Looks very very rushed.
  • lovinmyps3 - February 10, 2011 11:13 p.m.

    That kid looks proud of himself for uncovering that word. Also, those parents are way too propective of their delicate little snowflake. Turn off that word game and get the kid started on Street Fighter or Mario at least!
  • KnightDehumidifier - February 10, 2011 11:12 p.m.

    Suddenly I recall The IT Crowd and its Countdown episode. Needless to say, you people should join in some Street Countdown, it's more fun with more people!
  • Brutalicus - February 10, 2011 10:54 p.m.

    Kid's gonna be calling everybody shitheads in second grade, if only somebody could catch it on film :/ Yay vocabulary! Learn early!
  • GhostofTaft - February 10, 2011 10:29 p.m.

    Everyone knows that the coolest preschooler is the one who knows the most swear words. He's just getting head start.
  • JohnnyApplesperm - February 10, 2011 10:29 p.m.

    TheChemist is totally right, I sorta doubt the kid could read that anyways. And if he has been sheltered as well as the parents hope, even if he did he would have no clue what it meant having never heard the word "shit", right? The best thing to do as parents would have been to skip to the next word or exit the game, or whatever the most inconspicuous way to do it would be. By having a big hubabaloo about it they only draw attention to it, and now that kid is really fuckin curious what a shithead is.
  • killorabbit - February 10, 2011 10:19 p.m.

    Oh my. That's unfortunate. He looks just like an infantile Mr Bean.
  • Cruddi - February 10, 2011 10:09 p.m.

    LOL Wii FTW... I bet an employee did that for sh**s and giggles
  • Ridureyu - February 10, 2011 9:49 p.m.

    I wonder what other words are a good anagram for shithead.

Showing 1-20 of 43 comments

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