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what is nsfw?
August 16, 2006 2:07 PM   Subscribe

What is Not Safe For Work?

I know it means no nudity, but where is the line, exactly?

Is profanity forbidden? What about bikinis and bathing suits?
posted by nyxxxx to Technology (11 answers total)
 
Impossible question to answer - depends on your workplace.
posted by agregoli at 2:08 PM on August 16, 2006 [1 favorite]


Dripping wet vagina. Unless you work in a maternity ward.
posted by The Jesse Helms at 2:09 PM on August 16, 2006


Anything that you could get in trouble for having on-screen (or coming out of your speakers) at your particular workplace.
posted by luriete at 2:09 PM on August 16, 2006


Marking something as NSFW is a courtesy so that your fellow mefites don't get boobies or gore or obnoxious anything jumping out at them when they might not expect it.

As others have said, it really depends on your workplace. In practice though, it is good to err on the side of caution when posting something that might conceivably be NSFW. Would you post the link on your lunchroom wall? your church bulletin board? show it to your grandma? or your 7 year old child? If the answer to any of these questions is "no!" or even "hrm well, i'm not so sure..." it is a good idea to mark it NSFW.

This comment is SFW BTW, HTH!
posted by utsutsu at 2:13 PM on August 16, 2006


Anything you would have to minimize in a hurry if your boss walked past.
posted by Milkman Dan at 3:35 PM on August 16, 2006


I'm still not getting it then. I'm asking this because I have my own website that I'm trying to make safe for work. But I had not, until recently, worked in an office with internet access. So all I have to go by is the place I work now. And it's really non-standard. At first even some innoucous websites were banned, like myspace. Then other domains were banned on based on text filters. Anything with a dirty word was banned...so lots of things that didn't make sense were filtered.

Then the filter was taken down and we could do what we wanted. So some people downloaded porn movies and a new policy was created banning that...but also a lot of online games were banned.

But something like an artistic nude? That's ok. Fark's boobies section is ok. Bikinis are ok.

But I still don't understand what NSFW really means to the larger world.
posted by nyxxxx at 4:24 PM on August 16, 2006


I think a PG rating in a movie is pretty analogous to the line of NSFW if you just need a general guideline.
any nudity, gore, lots of cursing = not ok
bikinis, mild cursing = ok.
posted by metaname at 5:16 PM on August 16, 2006


Fark's ads always freaked me out when I worked in a (somewhat) conservative office; I'd make sure the Big Boss wasn't around when I browsed the site.

Anything with audio that loads automatically is a dead giveaway that you're Web-surfing instead of working.

No nudity. No semi-nudity. Not even tasteful nudity, unless it's work-related (as in, "I have to research these paintings for my article on nude paintings).

If there's "strong language," it should be sparse. No titles with "fuck" in them.

And lots of workplaces will have other regulations as well. I once worked in an HR office where I was made to sign a contract saying I understood that I would be fired if I so much as viewed non-work-related Internet content from the office. So ... much of it will depend upon individual workplaces.
posted by brina at 5:17 PM on August 16, 2006


It's not a rule or a guarantee, it's a vague guideline, used by different people in different ways. It doesn't literally mean "not safe to view at a place of employement because it will get you FIRED." Especially as we have MeFites who work for sextoy shops.
posted by desuetude at 5:36 PM on August 16, 2006


NSFW can be roughly defined as anything that could draw unwanted attention to you and pontentially jepordize your employment if your activities were known. To be safe, ANYTHING that could not be somehow explained as work related should be flagged as NSFW, simply because sometimes IT guys monitor your useage. It also doubles as a 'tell your little kid to play outside for a while' filter. After all, I love me some good nudist trampoline games as much as the next person; I just don't want to explain it to my kids.

The truth of the matter is you should technically never web browse for pleasure while at work. I would never pay someone else to piss about online all day, so why should your boss? Even if you -are- browsing artistic nude prints for purchase, why are you doing it at work? Most employers understand the need to buy office supplies on line, check traffic conditions for your daily commute, read the news while you drink your coffee and such. Heck, most employers even understand the need to take a quick mental vacation and read the 'funny' junk mail that your brother-in-law forwards to you. But that WoW raid you promised to be in on? Nuh-hun. The crux of the matter is, if you are getting paid, you should be doing what you are paid to do during work hours. The internet just makes it easier not to.

That doesn't mean we all don't -do- it of course. Just don't get caught.

Some guidlines:

IF you are distracting your co-workers,(somthing noisy or flashy), then it is NSFW.

IF it will make it obvious that you spend more than 'just a few minutes' on it, (games, movies, message boards), thereby not actually working for the majority of the day, it is NSFW.

IF you are breaking the law (kiddy porn, your local terrorist messageboard), it is NSFW.

IF you are making money on the side during company time (ebay), it is NSFW.

IF it is somthing you don't feel comfortable talking to other people about (your irritable bowel syndrom, those VIAGRA pills you were ordering), it is NSFW.

If your aim is to make your site Safe For Work for a large, worldwide audience, err on the side of caution, and assume they are only -supposed- to be using their email and company website. Use an unassuming URL, make it as plain as possible, use as little colour and pictures as possible, and make it easily navigatable so they can go back to their place when they have to quickly quit the browser to avoid detection.

You can also advise your viewers to run it through this site first.
posted by billy_the_punk at 5:40 PM on August 16, 2006


If you've not worked in an office, just imagine your mother (unless of course she's freakishly liberal, in that case imagine the Queen of England or someone similarly formal) standing behind you while you browsed the internet. What wouldn't you look at while she was there?
posted by saturnine at 2:20 AM on August 17, 2006


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