CBeebies uses 'snowpeople' instead of snowmen on children's show, sparks debate

Catie Munnings used the term during one of the episodes of 'Catie's Amazing Machines,' much to the chagrin of netizens.


                            CBeebies uses 'snowpeople' instead of snowmen on children's show, sparks debate

The BBC appears to have sparked a fierce debate online after one of their shows on CBeebies, their channel focused on broadcasting programmes aimed at young children, used the gender-neutral term "snowpeople" instead of snowmen. 

20-year-old Catie Munnings, the host of ]'Catie's Amazing Machines' on the channel, used the term during a recent episode, saying, "Snow is amazing. You get to build snowpeople and go sledging."

Munnings was mocked for her use of the term "snowpeople" (Source: YouTube)
Munnings was mocked for her use of the term "snowpeople" (Source: YouTube)

Users on various social media platforms immediately caught on to the phrase and relentlessly mocked its use. Others, who weren't so amused, expressed their anger at the show, terming it "PC garbage" and "indoctrination from the BBC," and wondering how political correctness had reached so far.

One user wrote, "Got cbeebies on for the kids, talking about snow and how you can build "snow people" so we can't even say snowman now more," while another similarly commented, "I don’t swear that often - but ⁦@BBC⁩ ⁦@CBeebiesHQ⁩ please F*** right off with this nonsense."

A mum who watched the episode took to Twitter to call out the show as well, posting, "Watched Catie's Amazing Machines with my 4-year-old this morning as she loves it. However...Snowpeople?! Really?! WTF are Snowpeople? Do they really require a gender? Even my 4 yo said it was a silly word cos they're snowmen. Fact."

Piers Morgan also weighed in on the issue, according to Manchester Evening News. The 'Good Morning Britain' host had mocked the term last year by announcing, "Right, I’m off to build a non-binary gender fluid snowperson," and he couldn't help but comment on the most recent incident. "You don’t build snowpeople, you build some men. We, mankind, hu-mans, have built snow-men for 10,000 years," he said. "Catie you seem a lovely lady, whoever you are, but they are not snowpeople, they are snowmen."

The use of "snowpeople" was also supported by certain sections of social media (Source: BBC)
The use of "snowpeople" was also supported by certain sections of social media (Source: BBC)

Comedian Ricky Gervais joined the debate as well, taking the side of those who were against Munnings' use of the phrase. In a satirical twitter post, he wrote, "I can’t wait for it to snow so I can build a snowperson. With a huge carrot for his c***."

But there were also those who were more supportive of the phrase. "The reaction to CBeebies modernizing “snowman” to “snowpeople” is hilarious. There are accusations of over sensitivity and snowflakes from those who want it to stay gendered. Do they not see that they are the ones being delicate??" one wrote. Another commented, "I am sorry but if ur a grown ass man and ur actually mad that CBeebies called them snowpeople instead of snowmen u r super weird."

Cathy Ranson, the editor of ChannelMum.com, told the Huffington Post that she believes Munnings was not trying to be controversial when she used the phrase. "Snowpeople is simply catch-all term for every type of snow creation – be it a snowman, snowwoman, snow dog or anything else icy and imaginative which your child wants to build," she said.