Shit, just say the fucking word!

While this is somewhat of a personal pet peeve, it’s not something that gets me that worked up (the thread title may sound like it has a touch of vitriol, but it’s really just for effect and to get the point across), and my intention here isn’t to single out any one poster in particular, so I’m not putting this in the pit, nor linking to an example. Instead, I’ll put it here and phrase it in the form of a question: if you do this, why do you do this?

Here’s what I’m talking about: you don’t have to hang out here on the SDMB for very long to see that there’s no problem with using “bad” words. You can say “shit”, “fuck”, “asshole”, “cunt”, etc., to your heart’s content (as long as it’s not part of a personal insult outside the pit, of course). This board is hardly the church bulletin. But still, I notice a bunch of people self-censoring themselves. Typing “sh!t”, “f***”, “a*&$!”, “c___”. Why? It should be pretty clear if you’ve spent more than a few minutes pursuing the boards, that you’re not going to be offending any delicate sensibilities here. And if you yourself have a moral or other reason for not wanting to type out a word you consider offensive… why bother using the word at all? Surely you can find a “clean” word substitute, or just avoid it altogether?

I would think that it takes more thought and effort to type out “f&@#!” than it does “fuck”, so it would seem to be a conscious choice.

So, if you do this… what makes you do it?

By the way, I do understand that some people have a very specific, religious reason for not writing out the word “god”… that’s not what I’m talking about here.

Couldn’t agree more.

(Found that one in this style guide)

Another board I frequent has a prudery filter which converts “piss” and “pissed” to “" and "**”, which I think does more harm than good, because whenever I see the asterisks, I translate it into something much more profane. The filter, however, allows “ass” to pass… probably because it’s part of more acceptable words like, well, pass. So, you get sentences like “I’m really ****** that this ass was calling me a …”

It’s just a tic, like any other. And for some people, it’s a way to stretch out the underused keys on the keyboard. %^&!&&#@!! Ah! That felt good.

I have been known to use “effing” and related variants–but not because I don’t want to say fuck. Because I often like the way the “censored” version sounds better in the sentence. I have no qualms about swearing, but there are occasions when the clean version strikes me as just plain funnier, in context.

There is also the factor to consider that there might be people reading who are offended, or a little put-out about gratuitous language, and the poster might just want them to read the post as well. Besides, as my mother always said, swearing is a sign of an under-developed vocabulary.

Sometimes, when I’m at work, I try to avoid typing out “bad words” just in case they have any software installed to spy on what I’m typing. I’ll already be in enough trouble for browsing the internet on the job, I don’t want to add to it or hurry it up by using some bizarre combination of keystrokes that causes my immediate dismissal.

Also, there are times when I am typing that clients can see my computer screen. They are more likely to be offended and mention my actions to my employer if they spy me blatantly using dirty words.

Certainly a possible reason why people might do it, but I say that’s over-thinking your audience. If you’re communicating in a place where you know (from prior examples) that such language is accepted, it seems odd to me to self-censor on the possibility that someone might be offended. Again, unless you’re directly quoting someone and NEED to use that particular word, if you’re so worried, if that really is such a big concern, why not just choose another word?

But, this is certainly a reason people might choose to do it, so thank you for offering it.

At the risk of offending your mother, I have to strenuously disagree with this. OVERUSE and OVER-RELIANCE on swear words may very well be a sign of an under-developed vocabulary, but the word “fuck” is every bit a legitimate word as “apple”, “cat”, and “vocabulary” are. Certainly, there’s a time, place, and audience for it to be used/avoided in, but when I use the word, I mean for it to have the very meaning and effect it does.

Ah! Work filters. I’m self-employed, and work out of my own home, so sometimes I forget about things like that. That makes perfect sense. Thank you.

I try to avoid it except in the Pit. Never really know who’s going to be reading this, and I’ve had my kids peek over my shoulder while I’ve been on the boards. It also gets to be a habit sometimes. Work email is screened, gotta watch it around the kids and some coworkers and I personally find it more interesting to try to come up with a vitrolic rant that doesn’t use the seven dirty words.

As an aside, I once worked in a garage and heard a mechanic (who had kids) say “mother fucking cock sucking poopyhead son of a bitch!”

You Hollywood types sure have dirty mouths.
:stuck_out_tongue:

Same here, at least in terms of f*** :wink: . Seems like fair play.

I was just reminded of one of my favorite lines from ‘A Fish Called Wanda’:

Archie: You’re a true vulgarian, aren’t you?
Otto: You’re the vulgarian you fuck!

Carry on.

There is a town in the east of England called Scunthorpe.

On a football board I once contributed to, whenever anyone keyed in Scunthorpe it emerged on the other side as S****horpe.

I enjoy swear words immensely - not because it’s “bad” or “forbidden,” but because they’re just so damn expressive! When you hear someone shout “FUCK!” you know that they’re pissed!

That said, I do try not to RELY on swear words - any more than I try to rely on any other words. I don’t like sounding repetative, and if every other word out of my mouth is expletive deleted, it gets old really fast.

Obviously, while I’m drinking this rule goes out the window.

And as someone above mentioned, sometimes the censored version is just that much more amusing. I do like “effing,” especially when used in a context where it has to be italicized. It’s almost just as expressive as “fuck.”

~Tasha

I’m tempted to email the admin at a board I frequent, to see if they can set it to censor such obscenities as N**wich :wink:

And further reading: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scunthorpe_Problem

A likely story.

The emails were blocked because they originated in N**wich.

Well, my attitude is fuck 'em if they can’t take a joke. But even if you’re right and there are people as you describe, in what way does typing “fck" spare their audience in any way? If “fuck” offends you, then the bowlderized version offends you too, because you know what it really says. It’s not even as good a dodge as fake curses like “mother pussbucket” or the once-serious, now goofy “Zounds!” At least those have some philological distance from the origin. But "fck” means absolutely nothing other than “fuck, but I’m too polite to actually type it, even though I’m not too polite to use it.”

My general rule: anyone who types profanely is fine; anyone who disdains profanity is fine. You make this kind of self-important, weak sister show of censoring yourself, somebody needs to smack you upside your damn fool head.

All of that said, however, there are message boards set up by people with this bizarrely incomplete level of prudishness such that “f*ck” and “sh!t” are acceptable while the actual words are not. (Similarly, there are swearing prohibited boards with unsophisticated software auto-censors and not enough human moderators to enforce the policy.) Therefore, some people might have developed these habits that they cannot now easily break. Again, should be curable by a swift one upside the head.

–Cliffy

I agree with the OP. Either use the word, or don’t. Spare me teh sight of f— and c*nt and all that crap - if you’re going to use the fucking word, use it. If you don’t want to, then don’t. (Effing, I’m okay with, since that’s pretty much become a word in its own right.)

Another bit of self-censorship that I see around here quite often: people refusing to specifically name a business but coyly making it clear who they mean anyway. When people type stuff like “A large office supplies chain whose name rhymes with ‘maples’”, it gets on my tits for some indefinable reason. If you - for whatever reason - are frightened to name the business, then don’t do so. Dropping cutesy hints, though, makes it clear who you’re talking about, so you’re not really protecting yourself from whatever imaginary danger awaits you if you name the business, right?

Unfortunately, I am not allowed to type the full name of my god – his name is Sh!t – because it would be blasphemous.

Hail Sh!t.