“Survivor” host Jeff Probst said this week he will no longer greet players with the phrase “Come on in guys.”
On the longtime reality show’s season premiere on Wednesday, Probst asked players for their “guidance” on his use of the gendered phrase.
“For 20 years, I have used one phrase to call people in for challenges,” Probst said. “I love saying it. It’s part of the show. But I too want to be of the moment.”
“In the context of ‘Survivor,’ is a word like guys OK? Or is it time to retire that word?” he asked.
At first, the castaways agreed that they did not want Probst to change the phrase.
“I personally think guys is OK. ‘Come in guys’ is such a signature expression. I, as a woman, as a queer woman, do not feel excluded by guys,” Evvie Jagoda, a player on the show, said.
But later in the episode, another player, Ricard Foyé, told the host that he rethought his response and argued that Probst should not use the word “guys.”
"The reality is 'Survivor' has changed over the last 21 years, and those changes have allowed all of us, all of these brown people, Black people, Asian people, so many queer people, to be here simultaneously," Foyé said.
Probst applauded him for having the “courage, inside a million-dollar game in which standing up any time is risky, to bring it up again.”
“I’m with you. I want to change it. I’m glad that was the last time I will ever say it,” Probst said, joking that he will “probably never read” any backlash to the move on social media.
Wednesday’s announcement is not the only recent push for gender or racial representation on the popular reality show. The move comes after CBS, which is home to reality series such as “Survivor” and “Big Brother,” last year announced a goal for reality shows to have casts that are 50% Black, indigenous and people of color.
The network in 2019 confirmed new antiharassment, unconscious bias and sensitivity training, among other steps, after a player was ejected from the show over inappropriate behavior.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 'Survivor' host Jeff Probst will no longer say 'Come on in guys'