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Michigan State University has apologized for a trivia question about Hitler shown on a video screen before a football game. 2024-04-17 06:25:49

MSU was set to face off against Michigan at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing when a question about Hitler's birthplace appeared on the stadium's screen along with a photograph of Hitler.

The trivia video was taken from The Quiz Channel's YouTube page, according to the Associated Press, and the channel's creator, Floris van Pallandt, later wrote on the page that he had no knowledge that MSU was using his trivia.

"Just to make things clear: I had no knowledge of Michigan State University using my content for entertainment at the stadium, and it was unsanctioned and unwanted use," he wrote. "A random history question in an inappropriate setting."

It's unclear how long the image of Hitler remained on the screen. The YouTube trivia video displays the image for roughly 18 seconds.

MSU Deputy Athletic Director Matt Larson apologized for the inappropriate question and stated that the university "will not use external sources in the future and will implement more stringent content video approval procedures going forward."

Vice President and Director of Athletics Alan Haller said that nobody in the athletics department had fully reviewed the video before it was played, "indicating a breakdown in our process. The video was not a part of any sponsorship and was not tied to any of our corporate partners or any of our community organizations."

"An initial review was conducted, and the employee involved was identified and removed from work pending the results of the investigation," Haller added. "The investigation will determine any future appropriate actions."

Interim President of the university, Teresa Woodruff, also apologized for the incident, calling it "unacceptable" and pledging to "work with our Jewish community and every minority group to ensure Spartans feel this is a place where everyone can live, work, go to class, and attend enjoyable events."

The MSU Board of Trustees said it is "appalled" by the image. "The projected image was unacceptable, and as the governing body of MSU, we want to publicly apologize to all who were in Spartan Stadium or learned about it through other means," the board said.

The board added that it has spoken to Woodruff and Haller to express "its extreme disappointment" and demands to know how this question arose and promises to hold MSU staff accountable.

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