Slice of Life – Blooket

Today’s Slice of Life at TwoWritingTeachers.org, 12 October 2021.

Today while observing a computer class, I learned about a new review game called Blooket.com. As the children started logging in to Blooket for the review of the lesson, I began to help some of the children get to the page and join the game the teacher had prepared.

One little girl got an error message when she tried to write her Nickname, which our teachers always encourage the students to write their real names. She got the message “That name doesn’t seem to be appropriate.”

Someone said, “Oh, you didn’t use a capital letter.” I wish. We tried again with a capital. That wasn’t it. Then, so she could play, we just used her first initial and second name.

I found my cheeks getting red with embarrassment and anger that she had to get that message saying her NAME wasn’t appropriate. It was a name unnecessarily censored. It stayed with me, and I got more indignant.

When I got home, I signed up for Blooket so I could send a message to the contact email asking them to do something about it, so she wouldn’t have to get that message again.

Within thirty minutes I received this humble and helpful response:

Hey Denise,
We are super sorry about this! We will add that name so it is not flagged. We aim for users of every age group to be able to play! Unfortunately sometimes the computer picks up the wrong thing to censor.
Apologies for the inconvenience,
S.
I am thankful that I spoke up. As of now, though, her name remains inappropriate, according to Blooket. I will check again until it’s fixed.

8 thoughts on “Slice of Life – Blooket

  1. I would have done the same thing. It’s the kind of thing that makes me crazy with anger. I hope they heard you.

  2. It makes you wonder what kind of guidelines are used when setting up these programs. Glad you got a respon. Hope they follow through.

  3. They need to correct the phrasing of the error message! My goodness. It is wonderful that they were so receptive – and quick to fix the specific message – but this will happen to others. They need a new phrase “This name is not in our system; please check.”

  4. OH MY GOODNESS. This is infuriating. I am adamant about correct name pronunciations and spellings – I am so, so thankful you spoke up. What a brave and important thing you did!

  5. How beautifully you handled this difficult and sensitive situation, Denise. Your advocacy will surely mean so much to that student (I, too, cringe at that terminology over her name!). I admire the company for replying so quickly to your email – and I agree with Maureen: Blooket needs better phrasing, for the message in this context is demoralizing at least, dehumanizing at worst. Here’s hoping it’s already fixed!

  6. I’m glad you didn’t just let it go! What a great role model you were for your kids! (And I’m really glad they apologized and are working on fixing it.)

  7. Your story is a great example of how to be an Upstander, someting I am constantly helping my students to strive to be. Thanks for writing and for being such a good advocate. Anger led to words which hopefully will lead to change for the better!

  8. Denise, the litle girl must have felt sad but your guidance came to the rescue. I like that you also checked in with the company and received an apology. I hope all works out for the better.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.