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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Bleeping Out Words

I was idly scrolling through this blog...and something stood out to me; your decision to partially blank out the word 'd**n' in this post (I'll do the same since I suspect my comment might not get through otherwise). Realising that you're writing it that way so that readers will still gain context of what was actually said, I'd like to point out that for someone who's crusading against swearing, you are still putting that word into people's heads when you write it like that. A**hole may as well not have the two stars. Same with...bas**rd, s**t....All you're doing is putting up a front of delicacy while the very word you're trying to avoid is still planted directly into the minds of whoever is reading the partially censored swearword. My suggestion, to avoid hypocrisy, is to either write it in full as a disapproving but mature witness or leave the whole thing out completely....

As stated in my previous post, before you can comment on here on the Bleep! blog, I have to approve the comment (I don't want people to curse in the comments section, after all - that would kinda defeat the whole point of Bleep!). After whiting out the particularly obnoxious comments the author made and the author's name, I decided to share this comment.

Like the commenter I discuss in the post linked to above, this commenter (let's call him or her Z) is discussing this post, about a newspaper reporter I emailed regarding an article about Bleep! who responded to me using profanity. (I think the reporter may have emailed the post to his friends and ask them to comment, since I've gotten loads of obnoxious comments on that one, which is highly unusual.)

Z does bring a point that I've thought about for a while, though: starring out parts of bad words. It would be almost impossible not to use the actual word - sometimes I just have to quote it, otherwise the sentence just won't make any sense. While I try to avoid using them when I can, there are times when I really just have to. However, I don't want to use the actually word, since that kind of defeats the whole point of Bleep!, doesn't it? I also don't want to teach it to anyone who might not have heard the word before; if part or most of it is starred out, you know it exists, but not the actual word. It's obviously not preferable, but the only way I can see it.