Monday, December 10, 2007

Idle threat of the week

In general, I'm not a big fan of the web acronym. If someone is LOL (laughing out loud), I don't need to know about it, and if they claim they are ROFL (rolling on the floor laughing) they are just a big liar.

The purpose of an acronym is to save time, and that does lend itself to the laser fast discourse that goes down on instant messages and in chat rooms. But therein lies the rub: If you want to type as quickly as possible is it really necessary to take the time to make sure everyone knows what you say is IMHO (in my humble opinion) or to politely PMFJI (pardon me for jumping in?)

Still, there is one web acronym that I whole-heartily endorse.

The NSFW (not safe for work) tag is an essential tool for any responsible blogger who might link to content that could be offensive to those who the potential viewer shares an office with, or could be something that the potential viewer wouldn't want a record of on their work computer.

Perhaps it is because, as web acronyms go, NSFW stands alone in both efficiency and functionality that founder Drew Curtis is trying to trademark it.

Curtis's move, which would be the real-life equivalent of Dr. Evil's crazy, chestnut berating, father attempting to trademark the question mark he claimed to have invented, is so ridiculous it sounds like a publicity stunt. Only his trademark application, which was filed about two weeks ago, was not publicized and was only unearthed by the eagle eye of a website called

Of all people Curtis, who makes his fortune running a news aggregator site, should appreciate that, like it or not, some things belong to all of us. And his audacious attempt to slap a little TM next to the big NSFW is Idle Threat of the Week for December 3-9. IMHO we should all be ROFL at Drew Curtis.

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