JoJo Siwa, a performer and 17-year-old former child star with more than 31 million TikTok followers, addressed the controversy over a game in her Nickelodeon merchandise line that has been dubbed "inappropriate."
Parents complained about the subject matter in truth or dare-esque game JoJo's Juice, which includes prompts like "have you ever walked in on someone naked?" and have you "learned the art of twerking?"
The game is supposed to be appropriate for children ages 6 and up, according to the label on the outside of the box.
Missy Hammond called attention to the problematic content in a Facebook post.
WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU THINKING: Jojo Siwa getting backlash for selling game to 6 year olds that uses sexual language and situations. Game asks if players of the game have gone outside naked. It also asks the players if they can twerk, and if someone has walked in on them naked. pic.twitter.com/Hey9djE6p7
— Def Noodles (@defnoodles) January 4, 2021
"I'd toss this game out if you have it for your littles. I doubt JoJo herself came up with the questions, but this is out of wack ... this is truly disgusting," she wrote.
TikTok user @watsonfam6, whose name is Heather Watson, shared a video of some of the cards to prove to doubtful fans that the game wasn't Photoshopped.
In her response to the game, Siwa said in a TikTok that she wasn't aware of the content of the game, which has negative reviews about its content on sites such as Amazon and Walmart dating back to 2018 when it was first released.
"It has been brought to my attention ... that my name and my image have been used to promote this board game that has some really inappropriate content," she said. "I had no idea of the types of questions that were on these playing cards ... I was really, really, really upset at how gross these questions were."
She said she quickly took action to ask Nickelodeon to stop the game from being made, and the company has pulled it from shelves.
"I would have never agreed to be associated with this game if I would have seen these cards before they started selling it," she said.
Nickelodeon and JoJo's Juice manufacturer Spin Master released a joint statement to Insider, the outlet that first reported on the backlash, to announce that the game will no longer be made.
"We respect and value the relationship JoJo Siwa has with her fans and take the concerns raised regarding the game JoJo's Juice very seriously," the statement said. "This game is no longer being manufactured and we have requested that retailers pull any remaining product from their shelves."
Siwa's swift response to the backlash left commenters impressed.
"The only person I know that is mature enough to handle any situation thrown at her in a respectful manner. Truly amazing," one user wrote.
"This is how you handle a scandal in a mature way. Some influencers should be taking notes," another said.
"We stan an unproblematic queen," a third commented.
If you enjoyed this story, read more about how Siwa defended her ex-boyfriend.
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