The use of expletives in advertising and marketing can cause offence. That remains true even if some letters in swearwords are replaced by asterisks, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has ruled. A direct mailing for marketing firm The Fuel Agency Ltd took the form of a valentine's card. The text on the front stated: "I F …
"Marketing communications should contain nothing that is likely to cause serious or widespread offence."
Really? So, in a nutshell, all political advertising is illegal? Works for me.
Common f***ing sense at last!
It's always struck me as thoroughly stupid the way that the nation or rather, some of the sadder elements within who have no life, recoil in faux horror at the use of words like fuck or shit or cunt, but are perfectly content for newspapers et al to display F**K and S**T and C**T splashed across their headlines.
As the ASA rightly points out, everybody knows that f**k means fuck, so there is absolutely no difference between the two.
The only stupid aspect of their ruling is that both are somehow "offensive" because a small minority of losers choose to give those 4 characters such power.
They are not fucking offensive!
If fuck is offensive and must be eradicated from our lives for fear of offending the terminally lame, then so much copulate, make love, ride, shag, and all other manner of synonyms.
OR we coudl collectively get a fucking life, grow up, and abandon this pointless recoilling at certain letters when other letters meaning the same thing are fine.
For fuck's sake, as they say.
Of course they're offensive!
They're swear words, that's what they're all about! Using them is about adding power and force to the delivery of a communication (written, spoken, or often even shouted!), and in the right place at the right time they're totally correct and justifiable.
But in general usage, and particularly adverts, that's clearly not the right place at the right time. Otherwise they start to lose the impact they're meant to carry.
I'm not offended, but your repeated use of 'fuck' just makes you sound like a semi-literate cretin.
Where does this leave the smugly annoying FCUK?
For fsck's sake
If you don't like the valentine's card, then don't buy it.
I don't want to be regulated by a censorship regime. When we leave the abodes of our homes, we should accept that we'll see things we don't like. It's our responsibility to avoid stores which don't share our values. We can complain to the manager, and if they agree, they can take it down voluntarily. If not, then stop supporting with cash. But to go crying to the government for imposing a national ban on everyone else's rights is absurd.
However, I gotta say the situation may be different when I receive unsolicited mail(*) to my door (or email), that's my home, and I should have the ultimate say on what's offensive. That the advertiser doesn't posses a means of printing a non-offensive version for me is not my problem.
* Of course I believe we should have the right to block unsolicited mail entirely. The amount of junk I get every week is unconscionable. But that's a different matter.
Not the same thing...
FCUK is acceptable because it actually stands for something - French Connection UK - the fuck is merely implied, whereas f**k just means fuck. Surely that is the ASA's point?
Re: Not the same thing
Do you really believe that FCUK is not intended to be misread? Seriously?
Fuck all really
Oh course Fuck is offensive, that's its whole point. If you're looking for words that aren't overly offensive to mean "having a fuck" then use shagging or similar.
Sometimes you need a good swear word. I have nothing against the word fuck, I use it myself when I need to. However, I don't use it that often, when I use it people around me know I'm seriously pissed off.
If you use fuck all the time when "lesser" terms are available, what do you use when you really want to swear? You have to keep some words in reserve for when you mean it. There's nothing wrong with having offensive words in a language. You seem to feel that we should be free to use all words at any time, anywhere. That would have the effect of dumbing down English as it synonymies "fucking" with "shagging" . Although the literal meaning is the same the cultural meaning is not, and long may it be so.
I feel sorry for the small minority of losers who feel they do not have the vocabulary to talk/write without keeping some words in reserve
What I can't fathom is why so many people seem to find the cutlery so offensive?
Leave them f**ks alone!
RE: Not the same thing
Did tihs cpnoamay srtat boerfe or atefr the rsecaerh taht shewod taht olny the frist and lsat lteetr of wrods rlealy need to be in the croecrt pcleas for the txet to be rdlebaae?
re keith 21
I am offended by these words and I should be. These are, when used correctly, to add harsh meaning to a message, and these work.
Lets use an example. You wait in a queue in a supermarket and women asks, "I only have a pint of milk. May I go in front of you?" How would you respond?
Instead, she says "I only have a pint of fucking milk. For fucks sake, may I go in front of you?" I imaging one would punch her in the face, or at least decline.
People think that using these words means that these can be used to replace every other adjective verb or adverb as they see fit, yet in fact all they have done is blunt the offensiveness of the words. Swear words, expletives if you must, are there to be used, but like every other word should be used well, otherwise you sound ill-educated and seemingly lacking intelligence.
Lets use an fucking example. You like wait in a fucking queue like in a pissy like supermarket and like a fucking bint asks like, "Hey like, I have like a pint of fucking milk like. May I like go pushin' like front of your fucking place like in like this fuck awful queue like, know wod I mean like?" How the fuck would you fucking respond like? (Probably bored like...)
"If you don't like the valentine's card, then don't buy it."
That wasn't the issue. These cards were sent out as a mailshot advert by a company. Some of the recipients were offended. It wasn't about people seeing them for sale and getting upset.
Incidentally, you can get the post office to block some junk mail, but not the stuff that actually has your address on it.
It sounds like we agree then.
"Incidentally, you can get the post office to block some junk mail, but not the stuff that actually has your address on it."
I don't know about you, but I get tons of mail "to Lou Gosselin or resident". The bulk mailers do have my name and address, but I don't know how they get it. Needless to say, I never subscribed to this crap and it goes strait in the garbage. I'm not sure if I even have any legal rights in US to not receive bulk mail (like I do with spam).
If it wasn't for the odd mail from the DMV or IRS, I'd just replace the mailbox with an arrow pointing to the trash bin.
Yeees, but milk is spelled M-I-L-K.
So you see, the problem you describe cannot occur as there is no fuck in milk..........
I never found it annoying, just pathetic.
No fuck in milk?
Thatcher's Britain for you.
I was in the queue at the supermarket a while back, and the lady in front of me asked for some fucking lamb chops because she was doing a Gordon Ramsay recipe.
Oh Friggin Crap!
Problem with the use of "f**ck" & "f**cking" in having 2 asterisks plus the "c" is that the word being written isn't "fuck" or "fucking" at all. It is "frick" & "fricking" which completely nullifies the intent of the ASA. Of course one could argue that "frick" means "fuck" after all but so does "bloody" in many adjective uses that "fuck" has; eg bloody bastard, bloody bitch, bloody mongrel etc.
Oh FECK they're onto me bejaysus
Re-runs of Father Ted to be censored begorrah!
Drink Feck Ar5e Girls!
I'm not surprised
I'm no liberal and the language doesn't offend me in the slightest, but there's a fundamental clash between making out that it can't be offensive because it's not in plain text, but that it's clear enough for the reader to understand. It's obviously not the combination of letters that the readers find offensive, but the word being used. So if someone finds a different way of representing that word, then it's *still* that word - so long as it's obvious enough to the majority of people what the word being represented is.
If someone is offended by "fuck" then they'll be offended by "f**k" just the same.
It's a nice indication of where the offense lies.
People who take offense at the use of the word "fuck", but not at "f*ck", or "feck", or any one of a number of other fig-leave conveniences, are neatly and usefully marking themselves out. Whilst they *claim* to be offended by the word, in reality they are playing "Won't somebody *please* think of the children?" and assuming that "f*ck* is OK because children won't know what it means.
They have presumably not been in many school playgrounds.
As I understand it
In Ireland, feck is a different word - not a fig leaf for fuck in the same way that f**k is. Feck is the crap to fuck's shit. You can say crap on kids tv, but not shit. Same same for feck.
Also, FCUK is the internal abbreviation at French Connection for the UK office. The story goes that Trevor Beattie (the ad exec who came up with the FCUK campaign) was at a meeting at French Connection about rebranding when a fax came in from the Hong Kong office (FCHK) headed "Attn: FCUK." The rest is, as they say, history.
Fair enough, I stand corrected on that one. Always good to learn something new.
FCUK off you bastards
Personally I'm more offended by seeing posters for FCUK around town than I am about seeing the word FUCK, a word I use on occasion. Seeing FCUK makes me annoyed because we all KNOW these wanker marketing fucks are trying to make us see FUCK and think its funny.
That's my f**king new bas**rd approach to marketing f**cked right up the shi**er then.
2 = "widespread"??
Getting coat and off on touring holiday of Es*** and Sus***
hey why not head a little further north..
Every story that you hear in the media about the ASA always starts with the widespread complaints from < 5 people.
Somehow they kick up enough fuss to warrant the power and news coverage.
The number of people who bother to make a formal complaint is most likely a lot less than the number who find an advertisement questionable. Even a single complaint is still infinitely greater than the number of formal praises. Next time you see an advert that you think others might find distasteful why not write to the ASA letting them know how refreshing you found it, redress the balance so to speak. In the case in question the promotion, or as I prefer to call it, unsolicited bulk mailing (spam by any other name...) was sent to 1000 households. Two from 1000 extrapolated to the whole polpulation is a lot.
how do you think the peope of *****tone and Ligh* ***er Valley feel?
thats just fucking st**id!
Wah Wah, I was offended. They are Funking Idiots.
Feck =/= Fuck
Odd as it sounds, the word feck is actually an Irish word and it does not mean fuck, nor is it a euphemism for it.
Not that this will stop fecking eejits from taking offence...
PS WTF icon means what the feck in this case.
It should be an English word too.
But it only seems to live on in its description of someone with no "feck" being "feckless". Or, perhaps, the English should stop saying "feckless" and replace it with the more consistent "effectless"?
RE: It should be an English word too
The most fitting definition I found indicates that "feck" means "worth" or "value" and is of Scottish origin.
And I'm fairly sure Father Jack wasn't banging on about the inherent worth of things.
Hence feckless: without value
Now you know.
Title Goes Here
If it really was two *'s, as in "I F**CKING LOVE YOU" - I'd of argued it was "fricking", as two *'s suggest two missing letters.
Is "fsck" allowed?
Don't get me started.
When trying to fix a problem with a particularly badly sh*gged filesystem late at night, I had the corporate obscenity filters block my mails to and from a vendor support centre because I included a phrase like "I have fsck'd the filesystems, and the problem persists" (btw. I was in phone contact with them as well, but it's difficult to dictate several K of diagnostic data over the phone!)
I had to wait until the following day for the mails to be released when a real person could check the content. Good thing we worked out why the mails were not getting through.
I had a moan at the people running the mail filter who said that because it was a commonly used euphemism especially in spam emails, it had been added it to their blocklist. I then checked over a gig. of archived spam from my mailbox gathered over several years (don't ask me why I had kept it, I don't know, but I hadn't run out of disk space at that time) and found precisely 2 uses in many thousand emails. Not so common use, then.
OK, so f**k is offensive, but fcuk isn't?? Let's face it, French Connection UK pulled a pretty cool marketing gag with that. You see all manner of slogans using fcuk in them: 'fcuking gorgeous', 'fcuk me' and 'get fcuked' have all appeared on T-shirts and have appeared in magazines (albiet on picture of the t-shirts) as advertising. I'm sure the ASA must have received some complaints. If not, simple - we just anagramise our cursing.
If the fcuking ASA cnuts don't fcuking well like it, they can just go and fcuking stick their fcuking dciks and cnuts up their fcuking, sihtting asreholes. Wnakers!
As it happens, I believe that French Connection have been told off a number of times for FCUK and derivatives. But "told off" is pretty much all the ASA can do, so French Connection pretty much get away with it.
On the wider subject, there's very little advertising I don't find annoying. Can I claim offence at Direct Line's ads because I'm sick of the sound of Stephen Fry's voice?
"Can I claim offence at Direct Line's ads because I'm sick of the sound of Stephen Fry's voice?"
No, but I'll raise you with two simple words: "Go" and "compare".
One rule indeed
Which is why the ASA stamped down on FCUK. They could use it as a brand, but they were stopped from using advertising slogans in the manner you describe (no doubt dyslexics were offended and complained to the DNA). However, T-Shirts aren't (technically) adverts.
Top Gear's final episode of the latest series also used humour based on anagrams, pointing out that there were anagrams in abundance (GOSH and LIAR on James and Richard's car), before cutting to his own registration plate of CTU 131N. Don't think there were complaints tho...
Top Gear Anagram
I liked that. I thought it was some of the most subtle humour I'd seen from the show. "There were a lot of anagrams about..." (cut to JC's plate)
I'll see your Go Compare...
..and raise you a "We Buy Any Car".
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