s_h_3zmjad9id0o6c's profile

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Thursday, August 12th, 2021 11:29 PM

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Slurs as keywords

Was wondering what the rule is on slurs as keywords? I've found b*tch and cr*pple as keywords which I think ought to be changed to something less offensive.

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Employee

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3 years ago

Hi s_h_3zmjad9id0o6c -

We don't allow offensive slurs as Keywords, these inappropriate keywords you reported have been removed and the changes should be live on the site shortly.

Cheers!

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Thanks @Michelle I was wondering if the same could be done with "wheelchair bound" as that is not an ok term to use anymore, but as @bradley_kent said, maybe change instead of deleting.

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@Michelle 

Another query, what about the term "slut"? Seems like a pretty demeaning term that maybe needs changing to something else?

https://www.imdb.com/search/title/?title_type=feature&keywords=slut

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@s_h_3zmjad9id0o6c 

I would not support banning the keyword "slut." That word, while offensive or demeaning in certain contexts, has also been embraced by many, including in titles including the word, as well as by certain characters.

I also don't think it's possible to change "slut" to a different keyword. Today the word is not only applied to women, but also men, and in a variety of contexts other than sexual promiscuity.

With that said, I and other users such as @bradley_kent have, through manual editing, purged IMDb of similar keywords that were being abused, like "slutty-attitude" and "filthy-slut." 

And I do believe that certain keywords like "loose-woman," "harlot," "easy-woman," and "wanton-woman" should all be merged/autoconverted into "promiscuous-woman," if merely for the fact that there is no reason to have so many synonyms as different keywords. But first, I have been going through these keywords to root out their abuse.

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@keyword_expert 

Yeah I know about it being reclaimed :) The rest sounds good to me.

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@s_h_3zmjad9id0o6c I think the proper term to use would be "wheelchair-user" instead of "wheelchair-bound". This also has the advantage of being a noun instead of an adjective.

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3 years ago

Were they audited and some changed to "b-word" and something like "physically-challenged-person-slur" before you removed them?  I fear that this scary, unbridled march into removing/deleting keywords is destroying information that can never be retrieved and correctly formatted. Why have you opted so many times for the "nuclear option"?  Because it's easy and expedient?  Because audits take time and patience and conscientiousness?

I don't "like" these offensive keywords, either, but this action is destructive to the database. Audit, audit, audit.  Correct, correct, correct.  Please.

(edited)

Employee

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Hi bradley-kent -

In this instance, instead of retaining the keyword "crippled" or "crippled-woman", I have merged many of these into the more appropriate existing keyword terms: "handicapped" & "handicapped-woman".

Regarding the term "bitch" or "rich-bitch", for example, I have removed these keyword terms, however, I have not removed more appropriate keywords, such as "calling-someone-a-bitch" or "character-says-karma-is-a-bitch".

So ideally, keywords will only be removed or applicably merged to another term when appropriate.

Hope this helps clarify!

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And what about the movement to delete all "character-says-" (and related, like"calling-someone-," etc.) keywords because they might actually belong in the Quotations section?  (When that started, I submitted deletions that were accepted for literally thousands of these kinds of keywords.  This problem has been abated, but still reappears.)

P.S. "handicapped" is also a prerogative and questionable adjective.  "physically-challenged-" and/or "mentally-challenged-" would be more appropriate.  Such people are NOT "handicapped," just different.

"bitch" and "rich-bitch" should have been converted to "b-word," although that also seems to include the word "bastard."

(edited)

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@bradley_kent I'm not sure where you are in the world, but I know in US English "handicapped" is kind of the equivalent for how "disabled" is used in British English. Handicapped is pretty grating on my ears too, but I realised it's the word used in the US. Correct me if I'm wrong and you're from there!

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"cripple" is a terrible (and outdated) keyword, as are "handicapped" AND "disabled."  "physically-challenged" and/or "mentally-challenged" somehow seem more appropriate and objective.

(edited)

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@bradley_kent said:

Were they audited and some changed to "b-word" and something like "physically-challenged-person-slur" before you removed them? 

In many cases, it would not be possible to know whether these keywords were used because the contributors were deeming a character to be a "bitch" or a "cripple," or whether these derogatory terms were actually used in the film or show. 

"bitch" and "rich-bitch" should have been converted to "b-word,"

That would not have been a good idea if done as a mass conversion, for the same reasons (i.e., we don't know whether the word "bitch" was used by the contributor or by the character).

I do know for a fact that the keyword "bitch" was used in at least a few instances to denote the same thing as the "female-dog" keyword. Here are two particular titles that in fact had the "bitch" keyword for that reason: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt6785292/keywords

https://www.imdb.com/title/tt1328912/keywords

With the keyword "cripple," we don't know whether contributors were using "cripple" as a verb or as a noun. If it was as a verb (e.g. to disable; impair; weaken), then the term is not offensive. I do believe it was very unlikely that contributors were using "cripple" as a verb, but the possibility remains.

Believe it or not, in the past I had considered reporting "bitch" and "cripple" and calling for their deletion, but I ruled it out for the reasons I have stated here.

Just a personal pet peeve: I believe that "b-word" is a dumb keyword. Just because a character happens to say this word does not make it a plot point. Keywords are primarily about the plot. If the use of the "b-word" (or the "f-word," or the "c-word," or even the "n-word," for that matter) is an integral part of the plot, then it can make sense to make this a keyword. Otherwise, I feel these particular keywords are overused on IMDb. (I feel the same way about the "character-says-" keywords, which are also overused, but not nearly to the same extent as the "b-word" type keywords.)

As for @Michelle's decision to change "cripple" to "handicapped," as @bradley_kent points out, "handicapped" is also increasingly regarded as offensive. 

Another issue with the "handicapped" keyword is that it is so vague. The keyword "cripple" primarily connotes a physical impairment, while "handicapped" could mean either physically or mentally disabled.

I tend to agree with @bradley_kent that there should at least be a discussion on the message board first, before staff unilaterally get rid of keywords (unless a keyword is blatantly in violation of the guidelines). The particular keywords "bitch" and "cripple" had been around for years, and then they were gone in an instant, with barely any community discussion.

With that said, under these particular circumstances, it is hard to feel sympathy for the contributors who used these keywords, now that their work has been lost. These two keywords are just bad keywords, and contributors shouldn't have been using them.

 

Finally, I feel like the word "audit" has been too loosely used on this message board with regard to keywords. Sometimes it is possible to "audit" keyword usage by researching the title without actually watching it. But in other cases, the only way to know whether a keyword is truly relevant and appropriate would be to actually watch the film or show. I can't think of a better word than "audit," but I also think that word implies a level of precision that usually does not actually happen.

(edited)

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@Michelle 

I agree with @bradley_kent that "handicapped" is not a good keyword, either.

I believe that the word "handicapped" within keywords could probably use some editing/revision as well. I base that observation on the following guidelines:

ADA National Network: Guidelines for Writing About People With Disabilities

Note that ‘handicapped’ is an outdated and unacceptable term to use when referring to individuals or accessible environments.

National Disability Authority:  Appropriate Terms to Use

  • Term no longer in use: the handicapped

  • Term Now Used: disabled person, person with a disability

Interestingly, those two sources directly disagree with each other about whether "disabled person" is acceptable. The first source discourages that term, while the second source encourages it. But both sources encourage "person with a disability."

Regardless, the basic word "disabled" by itself as an adjective can be acceptable, and the word "disability" by itself as a noun can be acceptable as well.

Here is a rough starting point proposal for how to revise some of the "handicapped" and "disabled" keywords on IMDb:

handicapped (565 titles) --> disabled (172 titles)

handicapped-person (130 titles) --> disabled-person (164 titles) --> people-with-disabilities (9 titles) --> "person-with-a-disability" (new keyword)

handicapped-child (87 titles)  -->  disabled-child (62 titles) --> children-with-disabilities (3 titles) -->  "child-with-a-disability" (new keyword)

handicapped-man (56 titles)  -->  disabled-man (29 titles) --> men-with-disabilities (2 titles) --> "man-with-a-disability" (new keyword)

handicapped-boy (34 titles)  --> disabled-boy (19 titles) --> "boy-with-a-disability" (new keyword)

handicapped-woman (30 titles)  --> disabled-woman (28 titles)  --> "woman-with-a-disability" (new keyword)

handicapped-girl (17 titles) -->  disabled-girl (16 titles) --> "girl-with-a-disability" (new keyword)

handicapped-daughter (5 titles) --> disabled-daughter (5 titles) --> "daughter-with-a-disability" (new keyword)

disabled-son (4 titles) --> "son-with-a-disability" (new keyword)

handicapped-husband (2 titles) --> disabled-husband (2 titles)  --> "husband-with-a-disability" (new keyword)

handicapped-actor (27 titles)  -->  "actor-with-a-disability" (new keyword)

handicapped-dog (3 titles)   --> disabled-dog (3 titles) -->  "dog-with-a-disability" (new keyword

mentally-handicapped (74 titles)  --> mentally-disabled (59 titles) --> mentally-retarded (10 titles) --> retarded (7 titles) --> retardation (31 titles) --> developmentally-challenged (6 titles) --> intellectually-disabled (3 titles) 

mentally-disabled-child (7 titles) --> retarded-child (21 titles) --> "intellectually-disabled-child"  (new keyword)

handicapped-parking (16 titles) --> "accessible-parking" (new keyword)

I could go on, but I will stop the list there for now. Can folks see how these would be improvements over the current keywords? Calling someone a "girl with a disability" emphasizes first that she is a girl, who just happens to have a disability, while calling her a "disabled girl" tends to define her by her disability.

(edited)

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@bradley_kent said:

 "physically-challenged" and/or "mentally-challenged" somehow seem more appropriate and objective.

Even better would be "physically-disabled" and "intellectually-disabled." The word "challenged" should not be used in this context.

ADA National Network: Guidelines for Writing About People With Disabilities

Terms like differently-abledchallengedhandi-capable or special are often considered condescending

National Disability Authority:  Appropriate Terms to Use

  • Term no longer in use: mentally handicapped

  • Term Now Used: intellectually disabled

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By the way, "rich-bitch" still exists as a keyword, as of this reply. 

rich-bitch (25 titles)

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@bradley_kent

Ok, in the UK, as far as I know disabled is not seen as outdated. 

Are you saying from you own point of view that "physically challenged" etc. seems more objective? Or is that based on actual general discourse around disability where you're from?

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@keyword_expert Great overview of keywords there - and thanks for getting those links.

Also totally agree with the "physically-disabled" and "intellectually-disabled" over "challenged".

And good to know that "handicapped" is being acknowledged as outdated in the US (it has been a while since I checked on its usage across the pond)!

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On this side of the pond, "disabled" is viewed negatively.  There is a concerted move to "enable" people who are mentally and/or physically challenged.  Even worldwide, as currently evidenced in the Special Olympics.  Those athletes are NOT disabled, just challenged in specific ways that can be accommodated.

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@bradley_kent 

On this side of the pond, "disabled" is viewed negatively. 

Viewed negatively by whom?

This recent report implies otherwise:

In this report, we use the term ‘disabled people’ rather than ‘persons with disabilities’. The term ‘disabled people’ is recognised by the disability rights movement in the UK to align with the social and human rights model of disability, as it is considered to acknowledge the fact that people with an impairment are disabled by barriers in the environment and society.

Source:  "Progress on disability rights in the United Kingdom," UK Independent Mechanism update report to the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Oct. 2018)

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2 years ago

@s_h_3zmjad9id0o6c Progress! The keyword "whore" has now been blocked from IMDb.

@gromit82 I really like your suggestion to merge "wheelchair-bound" into "wheelchair-user." I have made a note of your idea in my private list of disability-related keywords that I will publicly propose for action by IMDb staff, hopefully soon. 

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2 years ago

Regarding the "crippled" and related keywords, I have created this new thread:

Duplicate Keywords - List #34 (Proposals for Permanent Merger and Auto-Conversion) (physical disability keywords)

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2 years ago

Update: many of the keyword revisions involving physical disabilities recommended in this thread have now been accomplished.

Duplicate Keywords - List #34 (Proposals for Permanent Merger and Auto-Conversion) (physical disability keywords)

(edited)

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2 years ago

Another update: several "bitch" keywords have been permanently blocked.

IMDb Staff: Please block and delete these keywords ("factual," "entertainment," and "bitch" keywords)