Skip navigation

Susie Bright Says:

Of course, it’s not just mouthy women who get the NSFW tattoo. Needless to say, if you’re gay— in any fashion— you are NSFW. If you use a “bad” word that would otherwise be published in Entertainment Weekly without blinking an eye, you’re NSFW. If you present photographs of antique, artistic, or educational breasts! — In Any Form!— You. Are. So. Wrong. Nursing Mothers can just forget about it.

What’s interesting, is how few characterize the hypocrisy of NSFW group-think as unAmerican, undemocratic, illegal— or unethical. All that fuss and bother to make democratic publishing possible was just a mistake, a joke. It’s as if everyone gave up.

Susie Bright’s blog post is interesting, she points out some of the ramifications for being labeled NSFW, and points to examples of inequity: if you’re a major player, a big company or publisher, you can throw pretty much whatever you want out there and it won’t keep people from getting to your materials, but if you’re not one of the major players, simply using the word fuck or discussing sexually explicit subject matter could prevent a lot of people from seeing your material, even if your materials are educational or commentary on a hot political topic of some kind or another.
There is a lot of discussion in the comments about NSFW being something useful that allows people to avoid links at work that might get them in trouble with their employers. People argue this is useful when they are passing time at work surfing the net instead of working. Labeling links NSFW is a flag to let people know: “Hey your boss may not approve of this.”
Regina Lynn Says:

I use [NSFW] mainly to flag links because it’s so easy to skim quickly and auto-click before you remember where you are, and the occasional bold acronym helps you pause. But I’ve never thought about it as censure of any kind. Or dumbing-down, either. It’s simply a convenience for you, even though I trust that if you are reading a blog or column about sex-tech, you are as aware as I am that any link you follow might (if you’re lucky!) have something racy at the other end. As far as I’m concerned it’s a heads-up that whatever I’m linking to might be something you’d rather not have your kid or your boss walk in on. End of story.

This really gets into the whole bizarre nature of America’s at-work culture. I happen to work in a pretty relaxed office, so I’m sure I don’t understand the full impact of having to deal with extremely prudish bosses and IT departments that watch your every move. Still, I don’t really surf the interweb when at work, unless it’s work related. I think it’s weird, people are expected to sit at a desk for 8 hours and be “productive.” How much of those 8 hours are productive? How much is spent talking by the coffee pot, surfing the web, sitting in the toilet poking at that weird thing on your penis and wondering if it’s just an odd fold of skin or a horrible growth that will consume your entire body, or doodling on a pad of paper?
If you’re a salaried employee, shouldn’t you be getting paid for getting work done and not for sitting around an office trying to look busy enough that you’re not expendable? If it takes you 4 hours to get something done and that’s all that really needs to get done for the day, why can’t you just show up, do those 4 hours of work, and go home? If it takes you 16 hours to finish something one day, then you should spend 16 hours that day doing the work. Ideally it would all balance out, when projects are at slow points, you’re not trying to kill time in the office, and when projects are in the final stretch, you’re working more than half the day. Wouldn’t that be ideal? Instead we have a system where you get paid to produce but also to be at the office for 8 hours, minimum. If you work less than those 8 hours, you might get docked, but if you work more you don’t get paid more. That’s not balanced, that’s not ideal, and it is probably part of the reason you have people surfing the interweb at work instead of getting work done.
I won’t get too far into the whole sexual harassment thing, as I think it is enough for me to say that some nights I wake up in a cold sweat desperately afraid that if I tell a female co-worker I like her new haircut I will be accused of rape, sent to prison, and have my ass owned by a guy named Bubba with a swastika tattooed on the head of his penis.
In general, I think the term NSFW is a symptom of a larger cultural issue surrounding not just sexuality, but also at work culture. I think that is a lot of what Susie Bright is saying in her post. On the issue of using NSFW on links, I don’t do it. Not for philosophical reasons. I’m just lazy. Also, I don’t care about you, because I’m a bastard.

Advertisements

One Comment

  1. Dear Sean,

    Bubba says hi, and kiss-kiss!

    I love your very realistic description of what really goes on at office jobs, where your thoughts go, the unbelieveable paranoia and pretentiousness people live with as a matter of course, as if this is how it “always” was. Chilling!

    If you write more about this work culture thing, please poke me with a stick so I see it!

    Susie


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: