If you’re a Canadian and you’re not Alex Trebek, don’t expect to be on “Jeopardy.”
According to the Toronto Star, a recent change to Canada’s online privacy laws has caused the powers that be at “Jeopardy” to bar Canadian users from applying to be on the game show.
A note on “Jeopardy’s” press site explains, “At this time we are precluded from accepting registration information from Canadian residents. We are currently evaluating this matter.”
Producers for the show told FOX411 the privacy laws in Canada have affected who can take the online qualifying tests for the quiz show.
“As international laws governing how information is shared over the Internet are ever-changing and complex, we are currently investigating how we can accept registrations from potential Canadian contestants,” the producers said in a statement. “The ‘Jeopardy!’ Adult, Teen, and College tests have already taken place this year, and we are making every effort to find a solution before the next round of testing is available.
Canada-native Trebek responded to the controversy in a statement sent to the Ottawa Citizen. He too blamed Canada’s privacy laws.
“It is true that for the most recent Jeopardy! contestant tryouts, Canadians were precluded from taking the online test, since the show must now comply with new rules set down by the Canadian government,” Trebek stated. “However, people are in our contestant pool for 18 months, and we have featured several Canadians as contestants on Jeopardy! this season (at least 7 at last count), including one who will appear this Monday, February 22, and two more who have already taped for appearances in March.”
Trebek added he hopes to see more Canadians on the show after the show works out how to handle the new privacy laws.
“We have had many Canadians as contestants throughout the history of the show, and we hope that will continue, because Canadians make great game show contestants,” he said. “We look forward to having more try out as soon as we are sure we can comply with all Canadian online privacy laws.”
It was not immediately clear what caveat in the online privacy laws was affecting the “Jeopardy” test. The Toronto Star speculated the hang-up may be over Canada’s strict anti-spam rules. According to NPR, recent changes to Canada’s Digital Privacy Act also address how companies collect information online. NPR noted the changes included fines for companies if they don’t handle cybersecurity breaches properly.
Meanwhile, Canadians on social media mused maybe their knack for the game show got them barred from taking the test.
Canadians are no longer allowed to be contestants on Jeopardy. I’m assuming because we win too much money.
— Kelsey Ticheler (@smytty94ever) February 21, 2016
@Jeopardy I find it funny a Canadian host and you won’t allow Canadians on the show. WHY??? I guess we’re too smart.
— Michael John Glazier (@TV_MikeGlazier) February 22, 2016