back to article Eight hour cleansing to get all the 'faggots' and 'bitches' OUT of Github

A small army of politically correct nerds will gather in London this weekend to launch a mission to "clean up" source code hosted by GitHub. A group calling itself Ethical Code claimed the platform has become a hub for, er, gits who insist on peppering their work with nasty words that have the potential to shock and offend. …

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  1. Hal Dace

    FFS, Reg...

    Thank you ... I'd forgotten why I'd basically stopped reading El Reg. Idly drifted back and ... was forcibly reminded.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
      Flame

      Re: FFS, Reg...

      What's that, ***? Not into the PC wars of 2014? **** ***, *****!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: FFS, Reg...

      Let's all have some fun posting innocuous content with potentially offensive words to GitHub to keep the censors occupied....

      4Chan should be told!

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "because we are an enlightened group of super-smart people who see through people’s exterior characteristics and judge them solely on the quality of their mind. Then sling the word “faggot” and “bitch” on the end because it’s hilaaaarious"

    Well he does seem to know many in the tech community better than they do. Me? I'm sick of casual homophobia and sexism from people who consider themselves super smart and liberal, yet somehow seem to the right of Ghengis Kahn.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      1) It's "Ghengis Khan"

      2) How you can be "to the right of" the same is beyond me, as the seating order of the french parliament was still not decided at that time.

      1. hplasm
        Happy

        Surely-

        1) It's "Ghengis Khaaaaaaaaan!!!!!!"

        We are talking PC nerds (and MAC nerds and *NIX nerds) after all...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Nobody here capable of spelling?

          Genghis Khan. Freely available spelling all across the interwebs. Please do look

      2. Kubla Cant Silver badge

        @Destroy All Monsters: actually, the conventional spelling is "Genghis Khan".

        It's presumably a transcription to the Latin alphabet of a Chinese transcription of a pair of Mongol words, so you could probably spell it any way you like. The "gh" construct suggests that the transcription was done in a language like Italian, where "gh" and "ch" are required for a hard consonant before "e" or "i".

        1. Robert Baker
          Trollface

          "['Genghis Khan' i]s presumably a transcription to the Latin alphabet of a Chinese transcription of a pair of Mongol words, so you could probably spell it any way you like."

          I doubt many people would agree with one spelling it "Adolf Hitler", even though that would probably be true to life. :-)

      3. h4rm0ny

        "How you can be "to the right of" the same is beyond me, "

        The anachonism is supportable usage. What irritates me is the implication that if you're right wing == racism | sexism | homophobia.

        The Fascists (as in the Italian party that introduced the word to the modern era) were formerly the Italian socialists and their policies were a fusion of left wing and right wing approaches. The Nazis were the 'National Socialists' and their progress was from early socialism to a kind of state corporatism and massive state control over business. "Right Wing" is not a synonym for everything evil in the world, even if the media and many left wing types like to present it as such. Sadly racism, sexism, et al. are traits of _humans_ first and foremost.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Do I like seeing those sorts of words in code? Not particularly. Do I dislike seeing those sorts of words in code? Not particularly. I know I definitely cannot speak for everyone or even for all gay people, but I'm not particularly affected by those words in any way.

      Sure, words such as those may offend some people and would probably be more socially polite to be excluded from usage, but in most Western societies, you (supposedly) have the freedom of speech, NOT the freedom of not being offended. That said, GitHub is a privately operated entity who tries not to meddle, so freedoms are rather moot anyway.

      It's my opinion that society as a whole really needs to learn to be more accepting of others (even those who are hateful or who may share a different outlook) rather than spreading more hate, for example by trying to shame the ones who are believed to be wronging others. No matter what form it takes, hate is hate, be it calling a homosexual person a "faggot" or persecuting the person who thinks such terminology is acceptable. If we want to change the world for the better, we should lead by example, not by persecution.

      1. big_D Silver badge

        The bigger question is, why are such comments in the code at all?

        Are we talking about a "gaydar" app, to allow people to steer away from what they consider an unwanted element?

        If not, then such wording has no place in the comments. The comments should be there to describe how the code works, not to set a personal agenda! If it isn't describing the function / method and its parameters / properties, then it is superflous and has no place in code.

        1. cyborg
          Megaphone

          This

          I don't want these comments removed - they seem like handy signposts to the fact that the person's code is probably crap if they feel that comments are for complete irrelevancies.

          1. wowfood

            Re: This

            I remember getting banned from a forum once for saying I was having faggots for dinner. Faggots being the following

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faggot_(food)

            Completely unrelated topic I know, but still. Also, from reading the brief description of ovo lacto vegetarian. Isn't that just like... regular vegetarian? I mean if you remove eggs and milk that's the general shift from vegetarian to vegan right? Or am I missing something here.

            1. Mark 78

              Re: This

              "Also, from reading the brief description of ovo lacto vegetarian. Isn't that just like... regular vegetarian?"

              Yes, Ovo-Lacto Vegetarian is just the full description of what most people would understand as a regular vegetarian.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: This

                regular vegetarian.

                If I ate nothing bug eggs, milk, and veggies, I'm not sure I'd be regular...

                1. monkeyfish

                  Re: This

                  Then you should lay off the bug eggs mate.

                2. Wensleydale Cheese
                  Thumb Up

                  Re: This

                  "If I ate nothing bug eggs, milk, and veggies, I'm not sure I'd be regular.."

                  As a neighbour who kept chickens used to say, "Eggs for dinner again, I'll be bound!"

            2. BlartVersenwaldIII
              Angel

              Re: This

              > I remember getting banned from a forum once for saying I was having faggots for dinner.

              Doesn't matter how many different definitions or cultural/colloquial terms there might be for any particular word - once someone is offended by seeing a word you wrote, there is only one definition: the one they found offensive. Once you've bashed your way into someone else's conversation, even if you later realise the context they were talking in wasn't offensive at all, when was the last time you saw someone have the guts to say "sorry, I misunderstood, apologies for interrupting" and get on with their life?

              I remember drawing the ire of a north american lady when I greeted a (male) friend as "you fat twat" in the typically vitriolic camaraderie we're used to, because it's apparently a word that means I hate women and can't possibly have any other connotations.

              1. Corinne

                @BlartVersenwaldIII

                Actually "twat" has for an awfully long time meant a certain part of the female anatomy, so "you fat twat" means the same as "you fat cunt". There are few people today who accept cunt as "nice" language so why should twat be considered OK?

            3. No, I will not fix your computer

              Re: This

              >>Completely unrelated topic I know, but still. Also, from reading the brief description of ovo lacto vegetarian. Isn't that just like... regular vegetarian? I mean if you remove eggs and milk that's the general shift from vegetarian to vegan right? Or am I missing something here.

              It's just specific hypocrisy, he says "I avoid the whole question of the morality of meat-eating much as, say, a celibate person doesn't have to worry about the ethics of polygamous relationships" yea, because battery chickens and continued impregnation of cows and having their calves taken and eaten has no moral aspect, don't get me wrong, I'm a omnivore, at least I don't pretend there's no moral issues.

        2. unimaginative

          Not all of it is in code. The use of the word "faggot" for example is most common in an IRC archive copied to github.

        3. ElReg!comments!Pierre

          > The comments should be there to describe how the code works, not to set a personal agenda! If it isn't describing the function / method and its parameters / properties, then it is superflous and has no place in code.

          If I had lost a penny for each time I type stuff like "why doesn't this fucking thing work anyway" or "why do we even need that shit?" in comments -purely to vent out- I'd be considerably poorer. Now culturally "faggot" is not in my vocabulary, but I'm pretty sure I left a couple "bitch" here and there, even if I try to clean up my comments when making my code public. Some just slip through.

          1. Vanir

            @ElReg!comments!Pierre outed

            I up-voted you. But then you would be poorer as I would fire you for putting such comments in a public code base: public in the sense that any other person / developer uses the code base. Even if it is the case that those comments you present as examples are the effect of code you have written yourself.

            If you have the urge to 'vent out' then summon up some professional pride and integrity and do it in private.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "If we want to change the world for the better, we should lead by example, not by persecution."

        Wrong, unless you stand up and tell some people are wrong, then they will carry on, regardless if you are leading by example. If someone had the balls to stand up to Hitler and (more importantly) his cronies early on, WW2 may not of happened. However people were so desperate for reform, they turned a blind eye to his nasty side (yes even Hitler had a good side) and willingly went along with his policies.

        So no, sometimes you have to "slap" people down, the trick is to know when that "slapping" has to stop, before you become the aggressor.

        1. localzuk

          I shall take this opportunity to tell @Lost all faith that they are wrong.

          Its "may not have happened" not "may not of happened".

          1. Mike Smith
            Headmaster

            I shall take the opportunity...

            ... to tell localzuk that it's only its when it's a possessive.

            So it's It's "may not have happened..."

            I think that's it.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          @Lost all faith...

          And Godwin's Law in 8 posts, not bad.

          "So no, sometimes you have to "slap" people down, the trick is to know when that "slapping" has to stop, before you become the aggressor."

          Hate to tell you this youngfellamelad, but if you're "slapping", you are the aggressor.

        3. Nightkiller

          "If someone had the balls to stand up to Hitler and (more importantly) his cronies early on, WW2 may not of happened."

          I could really see this happening.

          Imagine Neville Chamberlain asking Hitler to be more "inclusive". "Why yes, Prime Minister Neville" Hitler replies,"You are so correct. And just to show my good faith in the matter, I've just included the Sudetenland...."

      3. Jaxcaren

        persecution

        Those that do not learn by past mistakes are doomed to repeat them?

        I have been in the software dev business for a few decades and seen major changes. One quite significant change was effected by women who had been sexually assaulted at tech 'cons and found the organisers ignored attacks and blacklisted the victims! The same attitude was taken regarding online abuse in technical mailing lists and forums.

        Putting it bluntly, it took concerted effort and shaming of various communities before action to stop abuse was taken. Today, abuse is generally no longer considered acceptable or cool. Some communities and IT sectors still have issues such as a few UK network operators and some brogrammer companies and groups.

        As a woman with a trans childhood, I have seen a lot of abuse - in business both large and small and in some that have policies excluding such abuse - and not all is in the past!

        The sad truth is that in the current job climate and recent changes in employment law, many businesses feel they can discriminate with impunity and do so.

        Putting our foot down, naming and shaming businesses and groups has been proven to be effective at instigating change - ignoring abuse never works.

        Some people just need educating - others are just plain outright malicious. I think the objective here is to educate but I suspect there will be a minority that are plain malicious.

      4. hypercommunist

        I don't consider removing bigoted comments from source code to be "persecution".

    3. Killraven

      Make a disparaging remark on el' Reg regarding the usage of endeared terms such as freetard and commentard, then just sit back and bask in the rapid accumulation of downvotes.

  3. baz rowlingson
    Coat

    But...

    But what about my new Flappy Birds clone where a dog has to save her puppies by flying through obstacles formed by bundles of sticks? Its called Faggoty Bitch.

    1. ElReg!comments!Pierre

      Re: But(t)...

      Come to think of it, "Flappy Birds" in itself is a quite offensive name indeed. Don't thank me for the mental image(s)*, you're welcome really.

      *disgustingness may vary depending on your imagination.

  4. Pete 2

    Equal or !=

    > there is no place for ... any other kind of exclusive attitudes

    So provided one's comments are equally offensive or abusive to all people, you're fine?

    Hmmm.

    ( how about an addition to <errno.h> EOFFENCE - PC gone mad ? )

    1. John G Imrie

      Re: Equal or !=

      I'm an equal opportunities abuser.

      Fuck the lot of you.

      1. Colin Millar
        Coat

        Re: Equal or !=

        Or as Gunny Hartman so eloquently put it

        "You are the lowest form of life on Earth. You are not even human fucking beings. You are nothing but unorganized grabastic pieces of amphibian shit! Because I am hard, you will not like me. But the more you hate me, the more you will learn. I am hard but I am fair. There is no racial bigotry here. I do not look down on niggers, kikes, wops or greasers. Here you are all equally worthless."

        Bitches and faggots the best GitHub can do? - they don't make abuse like they used to.

        I'll get my (Full Metal) jacket

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Pete 2

        Re: Equal or !=

        > It's not PC gone mad. It's PC gone mentally challenged. Thanks

        Actually I was hoping for a variant on EFAULT¹ (bad address) when you get a pointer wrong - or in this case the PC (Program Counter) as a play on words acronyms. Looks like I didn't set the gag up well enough.

        [1] man errno

    3. phuzz Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: Equal or !=

      For me it's not about being PC, it's just my default pedantry that if I insult someone on the internet I don't want to use a gendered insult, because I might get their gender wrong, and they might be insufficiently insulted.

      Instead I try and insult people with words like "Arsehole", which is an equal opportunities insult.

  5. ADJB
    Joke

    And this is news why?

    I had always sort of assumed that Github was a hub for Gits anyway.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The real question here is if he's a "non-moral" vegetarian, why does he spend so much of his time preaching and bragging about it?

    I doubt people take issue with his dietary choices - what he eats or doesn't eat is of little consequence to me - but if he doesn't shut up about it I can see how that would get annoying.

    1. Neil Woolford
      Trollface

      Something from the old jokes home is relevant here.

      "I say I say I say, how do you tell if a person is a vegan?"

      "I don't know, my good man, how do you tell if a person is a vegan?"

      "You don't have to, they'll tell you soon enough!"

      "I do not wish to know that.. cont p94.

  7. ADJB

    That's my code knackered then.....

    I suppose I can expect a takedown notice for my "Faggot Finder" app which so many foodies have found useful on visits to the Midlands in search of this great delicacy.

    1. Crisp

      Re: That's my code knackered then.....

      I too was wondering what GitHub's patrons have against tasty pork dishes in gravy.

    2. John G Imrie

      Re: That's my code knackered then.....

      You Midlanders are weird. Up in Yorkshire we burn our faggots.

      1. Kubla Cant Silver badge

        Re: That's my code knackered then.....

        Up in Yorkshire we burn our faggots.

        And in Eastern England they use faggots to build roads and banks. With any luck there are quite a lot of faggots in the vicinity of Scunthorpe.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: That's my code knackered then.....

      HAR HAR HAR - He said faggot, but he was talking about a food. It's funny because he is really saying a homophobic insult and getting away with it because he's pretending it's about food.

      As someone who has had to deal with people screaming that word at me in the street through my teenaged years (only while I was alone and they were in groups, of course) I would just like to say to you in as clear a manner as possible:

      Grow The Fuck Up.

      1. John G Imrie

        he's pretending it's about food.

        Bollocks. Faggots *ARE* a food. No pretence about it. They are a kind of meat ball.

      2. ADJB

        Re: That's my code knackered then.....

        http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/foodanddrinknews/10511413/Beef-faggots-are-back-as-Waitrose-records-a-boom-in-sales-of-forgotten-cuts-of-meat.html

        http://www.uptonsbutchers.com/faggots.asp

        http://www.farmerschoice.co.uk/meat/buyfaggots

        and many many more.....

        If you ask a neutral question in the Midlands like "What do you think of faggots?" I would bet that the majority answer would be "lovely with mash, peas and a bit of gravy" and at most 1 in every 100 might even consider it to be a question about homosexuals. Like many words that have been hi-jacked over the years (Hacking for example) some people believe that the new, agenda led meaning is the only meaning and anybody who happens to use the word in it's older (or normal for many people) context is all of a sudden sexist, racist, homophobic, whatever.

        However don't worry that your not being marginalised enough because not enough Midland people understand your narrow meaning of a self perceived insult, Midlanders have plenty of terms of abuse and ridicule that can and are used to insult uphill gardeners who pay with nine bob notes to travel on the other bus, just not the word "faggot".

  8. Toastan Buttar
    Coat

    Grab your coat...

    ...you've pulled a derogatory comment.

  9. codejunky Silver badge

    “faggot” and “bitch”

    Anyone meaning small sausage or female dog will find their comments removed. Because some people just cant handle words (that applies to aggressive writers and sensitive readers). May also want to avoid git... oops

    1. The BigYin

      Re: “faggot” and “bitch”

      In the past I've been told to not use the word "abort" as it is offensive to USAians (connotations of "abortion").

      There's a dent in the office floor from where my jaw made impact.

      1. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

        Re: “faggot” and “bitch” @TheBigYin

        Abort. Retry? Fail!

        1. AbortRetryFail
          Happy

          Re: “faggot” and “bitch” @TheBigYin

          @Brewster's Angle Grinder

          > "Abort. Retry? Fail!"

          You called?

      2. Irongut Silver badge

        Re: “faggot” and “bitch”

        Really? That's just mental.

        I used to have a boss who liked to call any messed up situation or really bad code a whore's abortion. After working with him for 8 years I had to make a concerted effort to stop using the term myself because some people find it offensive.

        As for this whiney little bitch and his code cleanup campaign, I'm tempted to spend the weekend peppering code with profanities on GitHub just to annoy him. Well I would be but I have a life.

      3. Vanir
        Coat

        Re: “faggot” and “bitch”

        C/C++ coders are then in a no-win situation!

        abort(), terminate().

        But there's always an exception.

        1. h4rm0ny
          Thumb Up

          Re: “faggot” and “bitch”

          >>C/C++ coders are then in a no-win situation!

          >>abort(), terminate().

          >>But there's always an exception

          I'd just like you to know that I caught that.

  10. lostinspace

    If you actually search github for "faggot" you get precisely 7 hits back, one of which is referring to bundles of sticks. The others are hardly big projects, they're all dead. This idea

    seems a bit of an over reaction to me!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Abuse?

      > If you actually search github for "faggot" you get precisely 7 hits back.

      https://github.com/search?p=2&q=faggot&ref=searchresults&type=Code

      Having said that, many of them are in word blacklists (twatter and IRC clients and the like), others seem to act as sentinels by using a word which is easy to remember and stands out yet unlikely to be found elsewhere in the code. The last group, quite a significant one, seem to be test commits of nonsense files, perhaps by people who no longer monitor their Github account--in those cases, it would be up to Github to monitor for and remove unmaintained stuff that is taking up space unnecessarily.

      Having browsed through a couple of pages of hits, I haven't really found one which I would consider insulting towards another person or group of persons. Of course, just the mere appearance of an expletive or vulgar language does not count as offensive to me, although I am aware that Teutonic and Low Countries' sensibilities are different in this respect.

      I do hope this group are not trying to ride on the wave of publicity generated by the case of the female developer who quit GitHub (the company, not the code repository) last week-ish, as that would risk adding--in the eyes of the public--frivolous undertones to a very serious matter.

  11. Kristian Walsh

    Yes, because if we don't say its name, it'll go away...

    "because we are an enlightened group of super-smart people who see through people’s exterior characteristics and judge them solely on the quality of their mind. "

    Oh. Come. On. If he actually believes that, he probably believes that removing the word "faggot" from a code comment will make its original author less homophobic. Personally, I don't believe that any word is in itself offensive, and I have a strong opposition to such blunt "thought police" tactics as a result. But: you lose nuance and tone when you write, so you have to know your reader very, very well before you can confidently use words that are considered to be insults.

    Unfortunately, for "enligtened groups of super-smart people", being unable to place oneself mentally in the mindset of another person is a classic failing of such people, no matter how good they might be at writing code.

    But, as observed above, lazy insulting language in code comments is a bad code smell in the first place. If this guy has a problem with "bad" language in code, he should remind the coders that if they put projects on github, potential hiring managers can see that code very easily. Something peppered with non-descriptive and (to some) offensive words like "bitch" or "faggot" isn't really going to make you look like a good hire.

    ... unless you're going for a job in Github, of course.

    1. Rick Brasche

      Re: Yes, because if we don't say its name, it'll go away...

      if living in and around SF for over a decade has taught me anything, the guy spewing "faggot" the most these days is gay himself and using the term without irony.

  12. mourner
    WTF?

    "In the spirit of positive action....</snip>"

    Aaaaand.... that's quite enough to get me running for the hills.

    It's in the same league as positive discrimination (race / gender / whatever-is-current) in job recruitment. Just hire on merit and be done with it.

    This whole thing reads like some Daily Mail piece - OMG someone said something I find offensive, we should so introduce a new law to make that a criminal offence, no-one should ever be allowed to say anything that might possibly offend anyone else ever. The end game there of course is that no-one can ever say or express anything other than the societal norm. Is that really what we want?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      'societal', is that like socialist, are you some sort of commie, I'm offended, you should be banned.......

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        As a commie I find your anti commie sentiments offensive. As such I demand you be banned, and I be recompensed

    2. John G Imrie

      Offence

      I find the social norm offensive.

      Good that's the last base covered. We can all shut up now.

  13. Gnucklehead

    Dept. of Linquistic Sanitation

    Uhuh. Is this gonna be like feminists storming Wikipedia to purge it of masculine bias? (Google it of you think I'm making a joke comparison)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Dept. of Linquistic Sanitation

      > Is this gonna be like feminists storming Wikipedia to purge it of masculine bias?

      Ah yes. It's unfortunate that those groups somehow seem more interested on banging their own drums and generating self-publicity at any price than in actually advancing their causes or, for that matter, listening to the difference between marked and unmarked genders in Indo-European languages.

  14. The Dark Lord

    Priorities

    I'm not going to say that I think this is a waste of time. But isn't there something more societally worthwhile that these people could be doing? Like rebuilding a community space, or planting some allotments, or doing a bake sale for charity?

    This exercise seems like a self-righteous back-slapping party.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    This really pisses me off...

    I may hate people who are sexist, homophobic, racist, feminist, religious zealots, and anyone who tried to preach to me without invitation.

    But I accept their freedom to be arses...

    I judge people on who they are and what they do, not just because of genetic traits or because you happen to believe in a specific deity.

    1. John Hughes

      You forgot the Dutch.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Somehow reminded of

        It won't last. Brothers and sisters are natural enemies! Like Englishmen and Scots! Or Welshmen and Scots! Or Japanese and Scots! Or Scots and other Scots! Damn Scots! They ruined Scotland!

  16. The BigYin

    Wait....Github?

    Aren't they a cesspool of female exploitation or something? I'm sure I read that recently.

    As for comments in code, we sweep ours for swearies and remove them (corporate standards) but some do remain as they are "in context". Mostly these are mini-rants about the design of C#, Java or whatever and a warning that the code which follows is as ugly as an ugly thing from planet Ugly; but that's the way it has to be.

    Some are also just plain funny. Once you get down to a few well-known cases, it's easy to filter them out.

    1. Platelet

      Re: Wait....Github?

      "Aren't they a cesspool of female exploitation or something? I'm sure I read that recently."

      They discriminate against those that are differently abled, specifically those lacking the ability to use a hula hoop

    2. Teiwaz Silver badge

      Re: Wait....Github?

      I thought it was meant to be a Go Go Bar.

      I have come across code at work that referred to the overseeing analyst by the nickname 'winkle', though never given offical sanction, it was allowed to be kept in as it was 'funny'.

      This all sounds like a 'cub scout' attempt to claw back some P.C. credentials after the recent news. Honestly, there's a difference between cleaning house and sanitizing it until it has all the warmth and humanity of an operating theatre.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not all English is the same...

    Where I come from, here in t'North, the word 'faggot' has no un-PC connotations whatsoever, unlike the phrase 'jobby jabbin arse bandit' but that probably didn't make their filter.....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not all English is the same...

      Where I grew up in the north, it only had un-PC connotations, almost nobody knew it was a food, just a thing to shout at those who were different.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "A group calling itself Ethical Code claimed the platform has become a hub for, er, gits who insist on peppering their work with nasty words that have the potential to shock and offend."

    Trolls and 'tards have no ability to shock offend.

    Kids hid behind a screen being themselves is not shocking and you can't be offended by retards. You have to pity them and diss their mothers, like they do, for dragging them up and not raising them properly to function as part of a society.

    Daft kids need a good smacking.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Github

    I have no idea what any of this means.

    Granddad

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What's wrong with being offended?

    http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xl2w7q_easily-offended-then-watch-this_fun

  21. grant Davidson
    WTF?

    Just WOW

    This isn't political correctness. It just people trying to be kind. The article makes it sound like a joke and the majority of responses make me disappointed in the lack of thought or care for others here.

    If the words were antisemitic or against black people would that be ok? I'm pretty sure that if it code was found saying "n**ger" and the code was by Apple or Microsoft then there would be major storm and lots of apologies..and rightly so.

    I'm white, male and heterosexual. There are pretty much no offensive words for any of those groupings that mean anything because I've never been and probably never will be stigmatized, harassed, miss opportunities because of my skin, gender or sexual orientation. I will never truly understand how it feels to be nervous of people and their reactions because of my DNA (rather than because of who I am as an individual). In fact I can believe that it's 2014 and people still don't get that this is just fuc*ing offensive shit. Bo ho. I can't just call people whatever I want cause I don't think they should be offended by it. Grow the fu*k up.

    In a world where people get killed for being gay in some countries or just insulted (and occasionally beaten up) in more civilized lands I'm well chuffed that some people are putting the effort in to show that they give a shit. Whilst people have the right to be arseholes and say offensive things other people have the right to kick against the pricks.

    If this is the biggest issue that freedom of speech has in the west then we are screwed.

    1. chris lively

      Re: Just WOW

      Not sure if you are aware of this or not but being a white male, at least in 'merica, means you have been discriminated against based on your race and gender. Assuming you've ever applied for a job. It's federally mandated and called "Equal Opportunity". You might want to look that up.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Just WOW

        Yeah, it's a shit being a white straight male, all those doors that must be closed to you. I weep for you.

        Meanwhile in the real world...

    2. Robert Baker
      Joke

      Re: Just WOW

      Who are you calling pricks? :-)

  22. Luke McCarthy

    I can't say I've ever used vulgar language in code comments since I was 16, but then again I don't really write many comments.

    1. Ben Liddicott

      Made me laugh... :-)

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        I have, university work. Writing a 2d platformer, the day before it was due my project got corrupted. Had to pull another all nighter (pulled an all nighter finishing it the day before). Got to the end of it, and I'd gotten everything working again, gravity, jumping, blocks that crumbled, variable frame rate, but for some reason I couldn't die in it. I wound up leaving a comment in there around my "death" code along the lines of

        // oh dear god why the fuck aren't I dying. I have a fucking if statement checking my fucking lives against fucking 0 and the piece of shit character still keeps coming back for more the stupid bastage WHY WONT YOU DIE!!!

        I was so tired I forgot to remove said comment. Turns out in my sleep deprived state I'd gone

        if ( lives <= 0 );

        that semi-colon lost me marks, but the comment apparently gave my lecturer a chuckle.

  23. Tom 35

    Gits

    Had someone is sales get all bent about male/female cable connectors. Said I made it up even after I said it was industry standard from before I was born. Showed her a catalog, web sites, then sent her across the street to Best Buy. She got kicked out of Best Buy.

    Good thing I didn't show her a gender changer.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    FIFY

    :s/\(faggot|bitches\)/ovo-lacto-vegitarian/g

    Aaaaaaand done.

    1. Flat Phillip

      Re: FIFY

      I'd prefer :%s but I like your idea anyhow.

  25. Rick Brasche

    Some "offense" more allowed than others of course.

    "freaking out the straights" was quite the cool thing until those freaks became the new straights and then started the official cult of Litigious Butthurt.

  26. The Grump

    Fags !

    I hate fags. Fags are an annoying, unsightly blight upon the world. They just lie there, ruining an otherwise quaint city street view with their hideous appearance. I would approve of ridding the world of fags, but the huge amount of fags would require incinerators running day and night, to rid the world of all of them. Yes - fags ( the unused end of a cigarette or cigar) are disgusting.

    ---------

    See - I could not have wrote this completely inoffensive paragraph with groups line "Ethical Conduct" running the grammar police. My policy is - "If anything I say or do offends you, please don't hesitate - be offended. Just don't unload your emotional baggage on me".

    And what is "being offended"? It means you get to try to dictate the speech or actions of another person, based on your emotional sensitivities. Look, if I get the facts wrong, like spelling a certain metal used in soda cans as "alumimen", I will apologize. As for matters of my opinion, it's MY opinion, and my opinion doesn't change because your itty-bitty hurt feelings were hurt. That's YOUR problem. not mine. Have a nice day.

    1. Martin
      FAIL

      Re: Fags !

      I have some sympathy with your point, but in the interests of accuracy, I should point out that a fag is a cigarette, and the unused end of a cigarette is known as a fag-end or sometimes a butt. Don't know of a word or phrase for a discarded unused end of a cigar.

      1. Irony Deficient

        butt

        Martin, butt can refer to the fag-end of either a cigar or a cigarette.

  27. Charlie Clark Silver badge

    Legal redress

    I think the core issue is the way these things are handled. Isn't abuse a criminal offence in the UK and elsewhere in Europe? whereas it usually leads to civil suits in the USA?

    When abuse is illegal then it's a cut and dried affair and you don't need code of conducts and workshops to enforce it; of course, you'll still have to work hard in general to get it accepted. When it's only a civil matter it leads to them and people treading on egg shells trying not to offend anyone and still likely to be sued for harassment. As usual, only the lawyers win.

    PyCon has had a fairly meaningless (no legal relevance) code of conduct the last few years. Of possibly greater import will be the decision to have approximately 50 % of the talks being given by women in Montreal next month and the chairman is woman. In general, I'm not a fan of positive discrimination but it will be interesting to see how it works out: they'll ructions if the quality suffers but otherwise I expect it to be welcomed. From admittedly limited experience I'd say that women worry more about things like childcare and being able to combine family and work than the amount of swearing. Not sure how much "ethical code" is going to help there.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oh, Internet... with your words...

    Truly, the shoreditch fashionistas have outdone themselves this time! Ethical code? Christ, comments are ignored by compilers and interpreters for a reason! Comments are just that - subjective annotation.

    I won't defend genuine discrimination - ever. Julie Ann Horvath's treatment at GitHub, from what has been reported, sounds atrocious and only serves to reinforce the 'bro-grammer' stereotype that cheapens those of us who are professional.

    However... This group in London sounds like another bunch of bored silicon roundabout types crying out for attention. Perhaps these guys should stop drinking over-priced coffee and spend their time working on business plans instead of bothering those of us who actually ship software...

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Just wow.

    The real world is a mean spirited and sometimes hateful place. Full of people with nothing better to do than tell others what they can think and say.

    Fuck the censors. If you have a problem with something someone else wrote then move on. Don't like how git allows such comments, then tell them and stop using it. If enough people think the same way then git will change. If not, then you just need to git over your lame ass.

  30. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge
    Trollface

    Git (slang)

    "Git is mild profanity with origins in British English for a silly, incompetent, stupid, annoying, senile elderly or childish person. It is usually an insult, more severe than twit or idiot but less severe than wanker, arsehole or twat."

    So what do you expect to see in a GitHub?

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Coming soon....

    ... oldgithub.com The non-exclusive source code repository for sexists, racists, homophobes as well as everybody else. There's even a place here for anti-sexists, anti-racists and anti-homophobes too! No cleansing of any kind allowed. Oh, wait...

  32. westlake

    Keep it simple, keep it clean.

    If you are posting code to a public repository, it strikes me as plain common sense to present it as professionally as possible.

    If someone is looking for evidence to make a case for harassment in the workplace, anything in print is far game.

    Comments that read as black flags to employers or prospective employers are going to come back to haunt you.

  33. cortland

    What fool hath added water to the sea,

    Or brought a faggot to bright-burning Troy?

    -- William Shakespeare, Titus Andronicus, Act II, Scene III

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