Bowdlerization: why?

I just posted a sanitized version of a previously posted blog entry.

"11 Ways You Can Stop Pissing Me Off On Twitter" Profane, blasphemous version.

"11 Ways You Can Stop Ticking Me Off On Twitter" Sanitized, G-rated version.

Why did I do this?

For one reason: there's a need for it. "11 Ways..." is my most widely read post, hands down. The previous champ isn't even close. Many people forwarded the link to "11 Ways...", and said how funny and informative it was. I still get razzed for my inferred (and non-existent) dislike of all things cat-related.

However, one of the things that struck me in the response to "11 Ways..." was how many people said, "I'd forward this along if it weren't so profane." "Do you have a version using more professional language that I could send to my colleagues?"

I may be many things, but I am not a dope. I know that people in the corporate world can handle a little profanity, but from a corporate governance standpoint, no matter how badly someone might want his boss, co-workers or staff to read this, he or she may not pass the link onward to anyone, since a profanity-laced posting isn't necessarily appropriate for even a semi-official imprimatur. This relegates my little piece of heart-felt advice to underground status.

The same kind of restrictions go for many inter-personal relationships. "I'd love to forward this link to XYZ, but what will they think of me if they know that I find this profanity-laced rant so god-damned gosh-darned funny?"

Much like translating a story into German in order to sell the story in Germany, I'm not above adjusting the language to make it suitable for other settings.

Does this make me an opportunistic sellout, willing to use editorial shading to compromise my artistic integrity simply to gain audience share? Hell, yes. When I've had a string of NYT best-sellers and gotten a couple of cameos in movies based on my books, THEN I'll stop worrying about what the market wants.

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  1. Yes so buy the damn book already. And yes, the cat tweets drive me insane. But what's worse? Cat PUKE tweets. Ugh. T. M. I.

    Love your stuff Tony!

  2. Thanks, Carrie, I love your stuff, too!

    so buy the damn book already? Which book should I buy? Or do you mean I should write the damn book? Excellent idea!

  3. I wondered why you posted it again. I think your reasoning is sound.

    btw, Kindle has a feature that I think is great. While reading a book purchased from the Kindle store, you can select a passage and tweet it. Kindle will create the tweet, along with a link that takes you to the whole passage. Technically you're not on twitter when you do this since you can't see the twitter stream on Kindle. I wouldn't abuse the feature but I think it's great because of the way I use twitter. I follow people who have things to say or links I find interesting, not because I like to chat that way. If someone creates a link to a writer I'm interested in, I'll follow it.

    Having said that, my cat just stuck its ass in my face while I was trying to eat a ham sandwich. How you doin?

  4. I love Twitter. I love the links to useful, interesting & amusing websites/blogs; I love the comments, be they witty, insightful or part of an ongoing discussion; I love the chatting, too, the connections and discovery of mutual interests and new interlocutors.

    No cat ass, no ham sandwich. I'm still doing jus' fine, thanks.



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