Re: My use of profanity

Subject: Re: My use of profanity
From: Robert Plamondon <robert -at- PLAMONDON -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 9 Nov 1995 20:51:12 PST

My grandmother insisted that intentionally giving offense was bad
manners. While attempting to work the word "fuck" into mainstream
work has a certain Sixties nostalgia to it, it still shocks some people,
horrifies others, and stirs feelings of contempt is still more.
Some older readers may smile to themselves and say, "Just like when
we were kids."

None of these reactions are helpful in any kind of technical documentation
I've ever come into contact with, or even semi-informal writing in
forums like mailing lists.

Here's a thought experiment for those who like the idea of using
rough language to a broad audience: strike the word, "fuck," and
replace it, in some appropriate context, with "nigger." Is your
stance the same?

(Not that I'm in favor of censorship -- god forbid. But I don't
think that vulgarity works as well with a broad audience as it might
among your immediate peers, and that failure can be very loud and

-- Robert
Robert Plamondon * President/Managing Editor, High-Tech Technical Writing, Inc.
36475 Norton Creek Road * Blodgett * Oregon * 97326
robert -at- plamondon -dot- com * (541) 453-5841 * Fax: (541) 453-4139

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