Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Notice on Language

I am getting fed up with the number of comments I have to delete retrospectively. I just won't tolerate the kind of bad language which is to be found on Guido's comment pages or on Devil's Kitchen. This is not a swear blog.

In future, any comment containing any kind of swear word is liable to be deleted without explanation. And yes, I know I have been known to utter the odd swear word myself. It won't be happening in future.

I want this to be a civilised site where people can read the comments without fearing what their eleven year old child might discover were they to have a quick peep too.

72 comments:

Daily Referendum said...

Well said Iain, if we want children to engage in politics, we should not be using language that we would not use in front of our own children.

Anonymous said...

Huzzah "!"! Now we shall have to be rather more inventive in our choice of invective and bile. Vitriolic vituperation will be of the 'Take that you bounder and cad, or I shall challenge thee to a duel on the Heath of Hampstead, you rogue and scallywag'

Three Cheers for Master Dale !!!

Anonymous said...

Hmm...Aren't you slightly hoist by your own petard on this ? By giving Clarkson your support for his 'bit gay' comment [which I appreciate isn't swearing] you have encouraged, or at least tolerated, a smidgin of the 'let it all hang out' variety.

That said, I appreciate that while the law says that if people have been tramping over your farm for years and you haven't complained, a 'right of way' is created - but if you were to appear from the house with a 12 bore shotgun and shouting 'Get oorrrfff myyy land!!!', firing off a couple of cartridges in the process, then I wouldn't argue with you either....

fr said...

On blogs a sort of linguistic Gresham's Law applies: bad vocabulary drives out good. This has been painfully apparent on Guido. The reverse helps to explain the current strength of pb.c.

Anonymous said...

Good.

mutleythedog said...

I agree - I have only been posting here because I thought you were that man who presents the National Lottery - but I have found out that is Dale Winton!!

No wonder you found my comments perplexing!!

antifrank said...

Thank you - this is much appreciated.

Harry Basset said...

Good for you Iain, people should use their brains, education and wits to make points and comments. Swearing is a poor substitute for thought.

David Anthony said...

Pleased to hear... it's time political blogs grew up and stepped up to the next level.

The Melissa Kite episode shows that mainstream journalists are becoming scared of the impact blogs are having. Such bad language would only be used as a source of attack in the future... i.e. 'Why should we listen to what they have to say... they are just a bunch of foul-mouthed, angry windbags' ... etc, etc

Newmania said...

Suits me ,I don`t swear , what about a phrase like "fatuous maggot", though ? You deleted one of mine I think, is that also beyond the pale ?

Anonymous said...

King Cnut

Chuck Unsworth said...

Iain,

Your blog, your rules. But I think many will find it difficult to express their sheer rage - given those restraints.

And: "I want this to be a civilised site where people can read the comments without fearing what their eleven year old child might discover were they to have a quick peep too."

There's a series of assumptions here, so:

Definition of 'civilised'?

Evidence for eleven year olds visiting/looking at this site?

Evidence that eleven year olds can actually read?

Frankly many might be rather more concerned by their children's investigations within the parental bedroom furniture. "Yes dear, it does buzz. Now give it to me, please. Haven't you got some homework to do?"

Matt Davis said...

Iain it is more than fair enough for you to ban swearing on your blog but I really must take issue with you for your "not in front of the 11 year olds remark". I am a school givernor at 2 primary schools and that experience strongly convinces me that 11 year olds know more swear words than I do.I'm afraid that your view of kids of that age as innocent of bad langauage is from a bygone and better age sadly.

sockpuppet said...

what about a phrase like "fatuous maggot"

a cracker, sir. "Crapulent* lackwit" is another of my favourites, as is "facile little runt."

And not an expletive in sight...

;-)

(No, it has to do with hangovers)

Iain Dale said...

Yes, Newmania it is. I have had to delete several comments by you recently and I am getting tird of it. You have some very good points to make, but if you can't make them without swearing or being gratuitously insulting then please don't bother making them at all.

Jilted John said...

Why no comment Iain on the racist comments from Patricia Hodge, surely alot more offensive than the odd swear word or Mr Clarkson rather juvenile outburst.

anglo celt said...

Fair comment on the swearing Iain, but on a more serious point: this wretched Government have scored two chronic own goals today

1)overpayment of tax credits amounting to a staggering £5 billion pounds (of OUR money!)

2)the delay (leading to almost certain abandonment) of Home Information Packs (HIPs) amongst scenes of chaos and acrimony.

The opposition should be having a field day at Brown's expense but having shot themselves in the foot over Grammar Schools are too busy backpedalling.

Get a grip Cameron. New Labour are a shambles and, what's more, are IMPOSING a Prime Minister on us who is one of the most disliked men in the country.

Start acting like a proper opposition and give New Labour the kicking they so richly deserve.

Anonymous said...

No swearing is good...but no insults at all? Blimey - if I'm allowed to say that. You're not going pc are you Iain?

Auntie Flo'

Anonymous said...

Oh Bum!

Chuck Unsworth said...

Iain,

You started from the position of not allowing swearing. Now, less than an hour later, you're going to rule out gratuitous insult as well.

Personally I'm in favour of a certain level of personal invective. It does so spice things up. And we wouldn't want to be too anodyne, surely?

Gary Elsby stoke said...

Iain, haven't you accepted the link between Conservative supporters and their vileness and uncouth behaviour(in front of 11 year olds)?

Well I most certainly have!

As a known Labour supporter, I am more than happy to maintain the responsibility and decency that this blog demands.

They are so rude.To think they wish to rule this Country. The very thought!

Gary

Anonymous said...

Newmania writes brilliant stuff. If he doesn't swear, can he please say m*gg*ts? I daren't write the word in case I get zapped from on high.

Auntie Flo'

more vulgar than a vulcans vulva said...

Iain, I am aware that I am particularly offensive but I make no bones about it - it's obvious from my name that's what I'm about.

You have deleted many of my comments in the past - fair enough, it's your blog - but all men swear. It's enjoyable, satisfying and an honest way of expressing how strongly you feel about an issue - or an individual. Everyone understands it.

I also find baiting trolls with insults highly effective in weeding them - and their agenda - out. It works.

French Connection UK off to those who object!!

wrinkled weasel said...

Not only that, swearing is so deeply unfashionable - soooooo last century, like the rule that you all have to talk like a cab driver.

Let's go back to the thesaurus and try a bit harder, shall we?

Anonymous said...

Gary Elsby stoke said...
Iain, haven't you accepted the link between Conservative supporters and their vileness and uncouth behaviour(in front of 11 year olds)?

Gary, at a meeting I attended a few years ago, the local nulab party screamed and shouted over the voice of our former Labour MP - their MP and party member - to stop him speaking and being heard.

So, please, no more smear tactics.

Auntie Flo'

william norton said...

Bl**dy h**l, Iain, this is going it a bit f*****g strong, isn't it? How the r***y h**k are we going to s*****g well know in advance which particular s***r words are unacceptable, even though they have passed into the every-f*****g-day vernacular? It's going to make self-censorship well-nigh i********e, and your blog u********e. Some words are obviously unacceptable in polite company like f**k, c**t and T**y B***r but what about border-line cases such as r****d, j*****l or q***q-k***y? Perhaps you could publish a list of b****d w****s and p*****s like when that old f*****t the Speaker consults his b******g E*****e M*y?

Labour HQ Troll said...

We are watching you.

Christina said...

Good idea, Iain.

Anonymous said...

Excellent idea, and not before time.

Blogfan said...

Blog reactions just took me to a very dark and sad place indeed. Full time workers on your and Guido's case me thinks.

Ted Harvey said...

Brilliant, first class, right on man and all that. Ban the Bad Words!

The bad language that afflicts many blogs and forums is a real creeps' "let's bring everything down to the lowest possible common denominator".

I've seen how, like a lot of puerile things, bad language just seeps and spreads. So stopping it in the first place is the way to go.

Johnny Norfolk said...

I fully agree with you Iain. It is only the childish that constantley swear.

forthurst said...

Foul language is what we learn before we learn how to deploy the Queen's English effectively; some of us never make that transition; so with flaming, learning to control one's anger comes with age and experience, but not to all.
Yes, Iain, you are right to ban infantilism and pronounce your blog a playground for adults only.
The urchins screaming and throwing sand in each others eyes in Guido's sandpit is truly distressing.

rilly super said...

I think Iain's serious you know. David Cameron has already been banned from this site because he logged on without wearing a tie.

Iain Dale said...

Iain, I think you should realy disallow anonymous commenting. Accountable commenting is far better in my view. Also it’s really easy to forge a comment if you allow anonymous commenting. (This comment was made by Laurence Boyce to prove a point.)

Johnny Norfolk said...

Iain this is what Brits are talking about on the german Toy Town Blog very little swearing but....

'Anyways, back to the toilets.

I have to confess my fondness for German lavatories, the shelf and all. Inspecting your stool is a great way to gauge your general health, especially for men. It should be a light brown hue, lightly curved like a banana and a slightly harder consistency than an uneaten one of the aformentioned tropical fruit. I'm not suggesting prodding it with a curious finger, but in the absence of a ninja, I'd say ask a proctologist.

Now. Brazilian toilets. The piping is so narrow that toilet paper causes blockage, the result being that you dispose of your toilet paper in a small waste basket next to the toilet. Which in the tropical heat isn't very nice. Different folks, different strokes but if your server also gets to clean the toilets, I wouldn't even touch him, let alone tip him.

Shelves and piping that swallows the paper? Yes please.

Anyway, that's enough talkin' shite for one day. '

Anonymous said...

Iain, a minimum of swearing (perhaps one word per blog) would be a better decision, as this would allow all us second-class citizens to express our true feelings about the political classes in words they might just understand (even with an education from Eton). Being too polite just masks the rage.

javelin said...

I think you should disallow anonymous comments. I know you tried before but maybe wait until you have some good stories and save them up.

Dave Bartlett said...

You could add a javascript function to your template to replace words you find offensive with '@$£%$!', etc.

Anonymous said...

more vulgar than a vulcans vulva said...

'but all men swear.'

No they don't. Nor is there any need to. Swearing is often tantamount to an admission that one has a rather lazy command of language. One way of emphasising a point effectively can be through under-statement. The people who often have the least impact are those who frequently (a) swear and/or (b) employ exclamation marks.

BaldockBaldrick said...

Effin' hell Iain, I thought we were allowed to offend. hmph.

jilted john said...

Surely swearing is allowed when Patricia Hewitt is talking in parliament. I wont do it she is a disgrace

jilted john said...

Patricia Hewitt just said that the government had an ethical recruitment policy regarding hiring overseas nurses. It then turns out that the government has approved 50,000 work permits to nurses from Africa!!

They work for agencies who then sub them out to the NHS. She is a liar and must be sacked, we cannot allow these utterly corrupt government ministers to continue in jobs..

Please someone do something

Anonymous said...

Perhaps a better alternative would be a virtual swear box, a kind of Pay-Per-Swear. That way a little light sprinkling in the mode of Simon Hoggart might be allowed. Billy Connolly rants would not.

A sort of price list :-

ar$e - £ 3
bl**dy - £ 2
b*!!*cks - £ 5
cr@p - [not really a swear word, but because we want revenue, £ 1
C**t - £ 25
D!ck - £ 4
f**k - £ 15

Other words price-on-application..

Anonymous said...

I agree that you should ban anonymous comments, but where foul language is concerned - does this also apply when discussing McCavity?

Anonymous said...

You statist, Iain.

Anonymous said...

Iain Dale, King Canute?

machiavelli said...

I've never understood why certain words aren't allowed because they're "naughty". Sounds like a load of b******s to me.

If we followed the same rule with Shakespeare and deleted all the offensive bits, his plays would be more like Pinter... full of pregnant pauses and not a lot else.

Malcolm said...

Oh bum.
No more blimming, blinking, flipping swearing. Damn it.

Jim Jay said...

Well said Iain - the blogosphere needs more civilised corners.

Roger Thornhill said...

I hope "disingenuous rancid monster" is still allowed. Otherwise I will just have to say that Blears is a twentyfivepounder.

Anonymous said...

Aren't we forgeting something Mr Dale?

jilted john said...

Patrick McCormack just skewed that incompetent moron Ruth Kelly by asking her for an assurance that she will not look to recruit assessors for these stupid HIPs from the ranks of junior doctors!

Anonymous said...

jilted john - the sight of watching Ruth Kelly and Yvette Cooper acting all 'pally' while Ruthie was getting out through the gritted teeth the news that Yvette had 'Balls-Ed' up HIPs was an absolute CLASSIC !!!!

Newmania said...

bhfltI don`t swear on your Blog Iain and I think its a good idea .Gratuitous insults may be difficult to Police

Iain Dale's rabbit said...

But you don't delete swearing where it supports whatever line you're peddling Iain. Or is it a case of 'I see no swearing'.

Anonymous said...

machiavelli said...
If we followed the same rule with Shakespeare and deleted all the offensive bits, his plays would be more like Pinter... full of pregnant pauses and not a lot else.

Good point, M. Does this mean that we aren't allowed to quote Shakespeare on his blog any longer? School kids are allowed to do that.

Auntie Flo'

Anonymous said...

Can we use Shakespearean curses? I do love the following:

Zounds! Sblood! God's Bodykins!

Auntie Flo'

Anonymous said...

No swearing? Gadzooks!

Auntie Flo'

Newmania said...

Iain Dale`s rabbit I would just like to say that I admire and respect your enormous wit and analytical powers. What a deeply worthwhile comment that was .

Anonymous said...

Well said Iain. I feel that this post may well link with your earlier post about not allowing right of centre blogs to be stigmatised as the home of reactionary nutters. Civilised, polite debate can help counter such accusations.

Iain Dale said...

Anonymous, you may be right. Since I posted this I have only had to delete one comment because of language issues. Yesterday it must have been more than a dozen.

ordinary housewife said...

I agree with you Iain - however, civilisation appears to have stepped backwards into the 18th century as far as language, parliamentary behaviour and vulgarity are concerned.

(Re the last -it's wit that makes it funny -the late Kenneth Horne could use the most outrageous innuendos but so wittily that it was very funny.)

We were taught at school that one should never swear unless one could do it in 3 languages.
(Secodary Mod of course, at the grammar school one presumes that Latin could be added))

Anonymous said...

I take it that X Tory PM John Major is Persona non Grata on your Blog then. We can't have someone calling his workmates Bastards can we?

dang said...

Johnny Norfolk.

Anyway, that's enough talkin' shite for one day. '

May 22, 2007 2:18 PM

Brilliant! Get real Mr. Dale. I'm beginning to think you're a bit of a flouncer. You can say that you hope someone burns or rots in hell or something similar but posters can't swear on your blog. Some of the things written on this blog are evil and deeply wounding but it's ok if no swearing is involved. How hypocritical. oh well, at least your spell checker is working.

hatfield girl said...

Never have I read a comment by Newmania that is 'gratuitously insulting'.

Every ball a coconut.

If there are Newmania comments we haven't seen we are being deprived of inspired use of debunking language.

Anonymous said...

Have you ever heard conversations between groups of eleven year olds in the street? Perhaps it's just round my way. Anyway you have decided to join the ever burgeoning ranks of the po faced banning classes, never happier than when they are dictating to other people how to behave.

Plums said...

So, how r doze educrated post 1997 suppozed to comunkate?

Capitalist king of the seaside said...

Could this be a not-so-cunning cover for the deletion of inoffensive yet unsupportive comments too ?

Unless I'm mistaken, "any comment containing any kind of swear word is liable to be deleted without explanation" seems intended to suggest that anything deleted probably contained a swear word.

Now, I'm not a fan of excessive Anglo-Saxon, but a proper rant occasionally benefits from the odd blasphemous boost-word.

Tell me I'm paranoid if you want - I don't mind it coming from you... it's the others I'm worried about

Mike Rouse said...

'Iain Dale... Blogger for all the family'

Fair play.

Cinnamon said...

*** **** ******* *** *** ***** ****! ****!! ****!!!
:P

G Eagle Esq said...

Sehr geEhrter Iain

Bravo - Ladies Children & Junior Eagles read your Blog Excellentissimo - they should not be exposed to inelegant language

However, as a Tory, I am sure you appreciate the implications of :

R H I P

Rank has its Privileges

You are the Owner & Champion of this Place so bewirtungvoll [entertaining]

Your divers supporters would be very understanding of the so-occasional colourful expression on your part, as you have to endure so patiently & with so much GutHumor the provocations from many, including :

your apologetic & obedient servant

und Alles Gute

G Eagle