Nicole Polizzi (born November 23, 1987), publicly known by her nickname Snooki, is an American television personality. She rose to prominence in late 2009, when she began appearing on the MTV reality show The Jersey Shore, alongside others. The series follows Polizzi and her roommates while they live on the Jersey Shore in a group house. Controversy has arisen around the show; critics have charged that the show promotes irresponsible behavior, such as casual sex and unsafe sun tanning in tanning salons. In addition, controversy has centered around the cast's referral to themselves as "guidos" and "guidettes"—slang terms for Italian-Americans—and the possible negative stereotypes that their behavior may reinforce or create in some people's minds.