Saturday, 8 September 2007

Young People mix

No movie title has stirred the emotions of Canadian journalists more than Young People Fucking, a Canadian entry in the Toronto International Film Festival.

In Toronto, the Globe and Mail, National Post and 24 hours, have been calling it as it is, without any dashes or alternate disguises.

The Toronto Star, as explained by Kathy English in her Sept. 1 public editor column, decided Star readers do not want to see the "F" word in print.

"Call us old-fashioned if you will, but respect for our readers should never be out of style here," said Kathy.

Fair enough, but we thought the Star passed the point of no return in using the full four-letter word decades ago in an editorial about Pierre Trudeau.

So "fucking" is OK with the Globe, Post and 24 hours editors and not so OK with the Star, which is using F___ over protests by more liberal-minded Star staffers.

That leaves the Toronto Sun, which has ignored the movie in TIFF coverage judging by fruitless Google searches for any Sun Media references to the movie.

But today, in the Saturday Sun, we discovered the Toronto Sun is going with Young People

So what's the story Bruce Kirkland, Liz Braun, Jim Slotek and Kevin Williamson? Why the full title in Sun Media's free 24 hours and not in the Toronto Sun? Do they not want to offend anyone who pays for their paper?

The Toronto Sun could always adopt the "Young People Fly-Fishing" line from a Star cutline Friday. That is safe.

It makes us wonder how distributors of the DVD release will handle the title.

But seriously, folks, will we ever get past words considered too obscene to hear or read?

The only four-letter word that turns us off in 2007 is B__h.


  1. Hi guys
    I actually had items about Young People Fucking in Friday's and Saturday's paper. And why drag us (me, Liz, Kevin and Bruce) into the debate about whether they should print the title? (A) You know enough to know it's not our call, and I think we'd all invariably prefer to print the actual title. And (B) you were around to see the shit hit the fan when we published the name of the band Bunchofuckingoofs. And that was back in the glorious Doug Creighton days when brown cows gave out free chocolate milk on the streets.

  2. I agree with Jim Slotek - for the most part - and Kathy English.
    With regards to the Sun's decision, why would you offend some readers when it's not necessary?
    Ditto for Star readers.
    There are ways of saying it without saying it ... and it works. Always has.
    We're not talking about college newspapers here, folks.
    A lot more goes into these decisions than 'let's be a potty-mouth newspaper and we'll be cool.'
    This was obviously written by someone who has never been in the touchy position of having the responsibilty of looking at the big picture before making the call.
    Maybe it will evolve.
    Maybe not.