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Deadspin Uncovers Why 'Rae Carruth' and 'He Hate Me' Are on Pakistan's List of Offensive Words and Phrases

Last week, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority made itself the butt of many jokes when it decided to ban its citizens from texting over 1,600 "offensive words." The Guardian reports that in a letter from the PTA to the nation's mobile phone companies, the PTA told the companies that they had obligations under their licenses to prevent "obnoxious communication." The PTA attached a list of 1,109 words and phrases in English to be banned and 586 in the national language, Urdu. 

Publications like The Guardian marveled at the "creativity and dedication" that local Pakistani officials showed in coming up with the 1,109 dirty words and phrases in English:

After serious deliberation and consultation, officials from the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) have come up with more than 50 phrases using the word "f*ck" and 17 involving "butt".

The list includes several apparently innocuous words and phrases, including "flatulence", "deposit" and "fondle". Others would likely only make sense to frustrated teenagers.

Among the more printable terms are "strap-on", "beat your meat", "crotch rot", "love pistol", "pocket pool" and "quickie".

But other people who reviewed the list -- NFL football fans, in particular -- were more confused than impressed with the Pakistanis' "creativity." Why was the name of now-imprisoned NFL wide receiver "Rae Carruth" on the list of words banned in Pakistan!? Why was "He Hate Me", the famous phrase on the jersey of XFL star Rod Smart, on the list? And why ban "Neon Deion," a nickname of NFL Hall of Famer Deion Sanders? Why were there eight obscenities involving the word "foot?"

After getting some tips from readers about the odd NFL-related words and phrases to be banned in Pakistan, the website Deadspin did some digging and figured out that to create its list of 1,109 dirty English words and phrases, the PTA simply copied -- verbatim -- the list of 1,109 words and phrases that the NFL Shop originally banned from use on personalized jerseys back in 2005! As Deadspin observed, Pakistan's decision "hypothetically presents a terrible conundrum for Pakistan's biggest Deion Sanders fan."

Today, the PTA announced that it has delayed the implementation of the ban. The BBC reports that the PTA says it will "carry out more consultations before producing a much shorter list of banned words." Somehow, I don't see "Rae Carruth" making the short list!

Posted by Bruce Carton on November 22, 2011 at 12:26 PM | Permalink | Comments (2)

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