Michigan State apologises for displaying photo of Adolf Hitler before a football game

Images of Spartan Stadium scoreboard displaying a photo of Adof Hitler went viral

Shweta Sharma
Monday 23 October 2023 09:54 BST
Michigan State Suspends Employee Over Hitler Image

Michigan State University (MSU) has issued an apology for displaying an image of Adolf Hitler on a videoboard before a football game.

Michigan State said the “inappropriate content” was displayed by a third-party source and that it was not representational of their values. It also suspended a university employee for the oversight.

Images of a huge screen displaying a photo of Hitler alongside a trivia quiz question about his birthplace went viral on social media sparking outrage amid the ongoing Israel-Palestine conflict in the middle east.

The picture was displayed on the scoreboard at the Spartan Stadium just before the match in front of more than 74,000 fans present at the venue.

“MSU is aware that inappropriate content by a third-party source was displayed on the video board prior to the start of tonight’s football game,” MSU spokesperson Matt Larson said in a statement.

“We are deeply sorry for the content that was displayed, as this is not representative of our institutional values. MSU will not be using the third-party source going forward and will implement stronger screening and approval procedures for all videoboard content in the future.”

Michigan State vice president and director of athletics Alan Haller said the video was not viewed in its entirety by anyone in athletics and it was not part of a sponsorship and had no affiliation with any of our corporate partners or our community.

“The image was harmful to our communities, especially our Jewish community which is currently experiencing a rise in antisemitism, including acts of violence,” Mr Haller said.

“I will be reaching out to local groups within the Jewish community as well as other student leadership groups on campus and within our department, each of whom has been impacted in their own way.”

The question in the quiz was from a YouTube page The Quiz Channel and its creator Floris van Pallandt said the university didn’t ask for permission to use or pay for it, according to Michigan Live.

“To be clear, I was unaware Michigan State University is using my content for stadium entertainment and this was unsolicited and (unauthorized) use,” he wrote. “A random history trivia question in an inappropriate setting.”

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