What’s The F*****g Deal With The Times‘ Profanity Policy?

1113fuckedup.jpgThe New York Times‘ internal style guide has some glaring inconsistencies when it comes to profanity… and it took a punk rock band from Canada to prove it.

A Kelefa Sanneh-penned review of a show at the Music Hall of Williamsburg by a band called “Fucked Up” referred to the band only as “********” (no spaces involved, no F*****d Up, no nothing), with the following disclaimer:

Pink Eyes is the lead roarer in a ferocious band from Toronto. What band? Well, the name won’t be printed in these pages, not unless an American president, or someone similar, says it by mistake. Suffice it to say that this is an unruly hardcore punk band with a name to match.

Except for one little problem… The New York Times had no problem putting “shit” in print, asteriskless, in a transcription of a phone call from Roger J. Stone to father-of-the-governor Bernard Spitzer.

So is profanity okay in some contexts but not in others? Is it only okay in transcripts? Does the Times need some sort of internal Lenny Bruce trial to sort out “good” profanity from “bad” profanity? Who the f***k knows.