80 Percent of Blogs Contain ‘Offensive’ Content

Apparently, there is pornography and swearing out there on the blogs.

According to Scansafe’s Monthly Global Threat Report for March 2007, a surprisingly high percentage of the Internet’s blog sites — up to 80 percent — contain “offensive” content, with six percent hosting active malware. To be added to the list of those deemed potentially offensive within a business context, a site merely had to contain a single post containing profanity, or worse.

[…]

“There were as many blogs with the ‘F-word’ as the word ‘China'”, said ScanSafe’s Dan Nadir.

Indeed, I found 39,033 instances of the two used in concert. And that’s just in English; I suspect there’d be a lot more if Chinese language blogs were included.

As Techworld‘s John E. Dunn points out, though,

The figures look sensational, but overstate the seriousness of the content on many of these blog sites. As the company admits, a single swear word doesn’t in itself mean the site is a problem. What is does indicate is the extent to which the Internet has become a channel for what Nadir suggested might be a long tail of minority interests that encompass interests others would deem ‘offensive”. Companies needed to be aware of the issue, however.

Ars Technica‘s Jacqui Cheng is also dismissive of the significance of foul language on blogs.

Still, we try to be family and work friendly here at OTB. To be safe, though, you should stay away from those other blogs.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Rodney Dill says:

    Actually if you apply “everybody’s” definition of the work “Offensive” to each blog, I would think it would be a higher percent.

  2. G.A. Phillips says:

    Yes and then there are the liberals everywhere too and I must say that looking at donkey poop is just as offensive as having to smell it and or step in it.

  3. Professor Reynolds linked to the same article and insinuated that HR and IT departments at large corporations have been taken over by the Taliban. With all due respect, our legal system that allows for the sudden and unpredictable creation of “hostile work environments” and the resultant damage awards is at the root of this problem. Having some experience with both, I’m certain that both HR and IT departments would rather not have to waste time on this, but the risk of lawsuits is just too damned great.

    This is just another cost of political correctness.

  4. Anderson says:

    With all due respect, our legal system that allows for the sudden and unpredictable creation of “hostile work environments” and the resultant damage awards is at the root of this problem.

    Would someone please explain what this complaint has to do with the existence of blogs that include words from George Carlin’s list?

  5. McGehee says:

    Anderson, did you miss the first sentence in Charles’ comment? Reynolds made an observation about the same article as James has linked. Maybe there’s more to it than Carlin’s seven words?

    But just to stay on-topic by every possible standard, I shall swear: “By Thor’s hammer!”

  6. What I would be interested to know is if the offense-o-meter also applies to the comments section of blogs? There is only one comment that has ever been deleted from my own site, and it was not due to a graphic word assault, because I have allowed comments against me to include “F off” because I believe in free speech. The deleted comment was for other reasons.

    It is an interesting thing to consider because true hate speech may be free of adjective use, but equally offensive and detrimental to those who believe that the rights of free speech must be coupled with responsibility. To me offensiveness is not in the lone word so much, rather the complete system of thought which is expressed. As such, I do not support a PC culture which examines every word in a sentence for offensiveness.

    Tammy

  7. Dave Schuler says:

    Apparently, there is pornography and swearing out there on the blogs.

    Thank goodness they were there to tell us or we’d never have known. Who’da thunk it?

  8. Anderson says:

    Reynolds made an observation about the same article as James has linked.

    So …?

    How my workplace is liable if *I* choose to read the patently offensive James Joyner, is far from clear.

  9. I too wonder if many of the f-bombs are from the comments. But then I usually avoid webloggers who curse often. I think they substitute shock and anger for thought.

  10. I suspect most of the content on left wing blogs is offensive to the right side of the blogosphere, and the converse is also true.

  11. Timmer says:

    No sh!t? Who f@%*in’ knew?

    Someone had to.

  12. Bandit says:

    What do the other 20% contain?

  13. Timmer says:

    I’ve swung in different directions over the years when it comes to cursing. Sometimes I try very hard NOT to, other times I just let it fly.

    I think it was in “One Minute Wisdom” by Father Anthony De Mello that I read:

    “Sometimes profanity allows a spiritual release denied to prayer.”

    And that helped. Sometimes dropping a good “f bomb” lets something out that a good ol’ “golly gee” just doesn’t cover.