Sunday, 24 August 2008

Sod the hiatus.

I read this before. And while earlier I was suitably shocked by the whole supermarkets-dictating-content-of-novels thing, right now I'm just giggling at the entire hilarity of Jacqueline Wilson not knowing what the word 'twit with an A' means. I mean, fair enough if there's some kind of north-south divide going on, but still. That's pretty darned rude.

Back soon for some book reviews.


Mosher said...

Personally, I just find it insane that one complaint in 20,000 sales made Asda take the book of their shelves. That's insane. But, sadly, typical of British society these days.

Too scared of bad publicity, too scared of legal backlash. Instead of pointing out that the other 19,999 purchasers didn't care they back down to one and deny other people the *choice* of whether to purchase it.

I'd say I'm glad I'm out of the UK but I watched Death Race in the cinema yesterday and all the bad language was muted, plus all the death scenes were cut! Welcome to Malaysia...

Pat Posner said...

I was once told that twit with an 'a' meant "pregnant fish" which I thought was a quite amusing insult to use.

B said...

To be honest, if I'd read that in my (non existant) child's book, I would've complained. I would be very surprised if there really has been only that one complaint - but I also don't understand why the woman complained to Asda, not the publisher, once she didn't get a result for Jacqueline Wilson. At the end of the day, I do think that what is basically a swear word referring to female genetalia has no place in a children's book - even if it doesn't seem to have that meaning down south. In my Chambers dictionary, it's quite clear that it's a vulgar word.

Pat, I will add that to my list of insults - it is indeed very amusing!

mosher - did you ask for your money back after the film? Seems like it was a bit pointless going in that case! How is Malaysia?

Mosher said...

I'm just going by the BBC story which stated there was only the one complaint. As for complaining to the store, that's usually the first line as you can walk up. Sending letters so often results in a form reply.

I agree with bad language round kids to some extent, but people have to enter the real world. By 10+ years of age (the range the book's targeted at), most kids know *far* worse! And if it's just a word to them rather than a word with a specific meaning, then what's the harm? The fact that the child in the book who uses it is the bad one who gets her comeuppance is also a positive thing.

As for Malaysia, that's just how it is here. My own fault for watching a violent film in a Muslim country with tight laws! I still enjoyed the film - will just have to download it or buy the uncensored DVD when I settle down somewhere!

Nice country. Friendly, trustworthy people on the whole. Except for the taxi drivers at Miri bus station. Bar stewards.

B said...

Thanks for pointing me in that direction mosher - this is the article for anyone who's interested. It does put a rather different spin on it.

To explain my perspective: I never heard any swearing stronger than 'damn' until i went to secondary school, at 11.5. THAT was quite a shock, after a very sheltered upbringing. And I know things are different these days and all that, but I still think I was quite a rarity never to have heard the F word (not the f word, though, that's different) before that.

Fair play about it being a character that gets her comeuppance that uses it too - that makes a difference.

Glad you're having fun! Thanks for the argument. I now keep changing my mind about what I think. That's a good thing :)

Mosher said...

Not an argument - a discussion ;) I'm still very much of the opinion that words are just words and don't see how people can get in such a tizz over them.

I mean, grading the age-restriction of a film based on the number of occurrences of swearies is madness. Not too many years ago, a live video of Eddie Murphy's stand-up would get a higher rating than a film depicting three stabbings, a fist-fight and a hit-and-run. As long as the latter only had the "f-word" once.

Really, people - we have more things to worry about than a few words. Like the fact that 50% of our youth seem to be turning into chavs.

B said...

I did mean 'argument' in the positive sense! I am enjoying it :o)

And this is it, too - words are just words. Why do we get so shocked by them? Context should always be taken into consideration, too.

Bloody Chavs. Where did they also spring from?

Another thing that I'd rather be concerned about is the way even broadsheets now sensationalise the least sensational stories. The Northern Rock thing for example - never would've collapsed if the media hadn't sensationalised a non-story. Once a few people started taking their money out and more and more people saw the queues, they thought they should do the same. It's like the crime figures. Violent crime is falling (unless you are a London teenager, in which case fair enough it's not), but would you believe that from the media's coverage? Never in a million years.

What else? I'm sure there's loads of other things that would be more productive for them to write about!

Mosher said...

The internet creates paedophiles. According to the Mail, anyway. No - it doesn't. Freaks are freaks and always have and always will. The internet just makes it easier to *catch* them, so it seems like there are more.

Chavs come from the same place as everyone else. I just wish we could send them back there. Or burn them. Or drown them. I'm not fussy.

B said...

Oh don't get me started on the Daily Mail. There is someone at work who believes everything she reads in there. Mostly I just bite my tongue when she starts, but every so often I start interjecting 'bollocks!' before I remember that although she's the one with the most extreme views, everyone in the office would agree with her rather than me if it came to it. I, apparently, am a bleeding-heart liberal, just because I don't think things are as simple as the Mail makes out. Drives me mental, especially considering where we work. (Don't ask. Just somewhere incompatible with her political views.)

The internet must make it easier for paedophiles to find others into the same things. That's what I never got - how people discovered others with similar 'tastes' before the internet, without getting themselves arrested. Or killed. But that's not the internet's fault.

Ah, chavs. The never-ending problem of what to do with them. Can we not just ship 'em off to an island somewhere? There must be somewhere they could go...