NYT’s Tom Friedman Bombs on ‘Jeopardy!’

Despite winning three Pulitzer Prizes, New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman bombed on Jeopardy! Friday.

By the end of the show, he had amassed a pitiful $1,000 placing him third behind CNN’s Anderson Cooper and NBC’s Kelly O’Donnell (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):


Friedman must have been nervous for he missed his first two attempts.

With the category “21st Century Lingo,” the answer was, “In 2011, BusinessWeek said European government bonds were this ‘poisonous’ kind of debt.”

Friedman responded, “Sub-prime.” I guess he missed the clue in quotation marks “poisonous.”

The correct response of course was “toxic.”

In the same category moments later, the answer was, “It’s the ‘tiny’ term for a person who writes short posts about one’s personal life on Tumblr or Twitter.”

Once again, the word in quotations marks was the clue, and once again Friedman missed it.

“What is a tweeter?” he replied.

Of course, the answer was “micro-blogger.”

At the end of Double Jeopardy!, Cooper was in first with $15,600, Friedman in second with $8,400, and O’Donnell in third with $2,000.

The Final Jeopardy! category was Inventors, and the answer was, “The National Inventors Hall of Fame said his work ‘brought the south prosperity,’ but he was out of business within 5 years.”

Unfortunately, no one got the correct response of Eli Whitney, but as Friedman wagered $7,400, O’Donnell $500, and Cooper $1,201, the three time Pulitzer Prize winner came in last with only $1,000.

Nice job, Tom.

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.