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Re: Why use profanity on this site?

Posted by Gary Martin on November 21, 2000

In Reply to: Why use profanity on this site? posted by Jeanine Plante on November 20, 2000

: I think someone has added the "f" word to a phrase to see if the rest of us are noticing("'f' a duck")! (I found it when typing in "turkey".) Well, when I let my 6th grade Writing Lab class go to your site during our class today, and they found this profanity, it was, to say the least, embarrassing that I hadn't seen it before. Why do you need such a word on an otherwise very appropriate and educational site? I would love to hear from other people on this. When I went to check the meaning and derivation of this phrase, it wasn't there! Which means that someone had to have added it for "shock value" or to get a laugh! Well, I don't think that is too funny, not in this day and age where parents are blaming teachers for everything, not to mention letting their kids find the "f" word on the internet! Thank you for letting me vent! May I have a response, please?

Jeanine,

The searchable database on this site is a list
of the English phrases and sayings that are in
common use - as comprehensive a list as I can make it.
English contains many phrases that contain swearwords, sexual references or other allusions that some might find offensive, like racism or sexism. Many reference works and works of literature contain such words/phrases and, like them, this site follows the principle of recording the language as it is not as some people would like it to be. Nothing is put into the database to shock.

The only censorship I do make is of discussion group postings that are abusive or are clearly intended to be hurtful.

I don't know much about the educational and social conditions in your country or what expectations parents have of you, nor is it reasonable for you to expect those factors to determine what I include here.

I'm sorry if you were embarrassed. It may well be that you judge some of the content on this site unsuitable for the children you teach. I don't know how old 6th grade children are, but that may well be the right choice for you.

If there are any constructive suggestions on how to change the site to suit your needs, short of censorship, I'd be happy to consider them.

Gary Martin
Phrase Finder Admin.