Two recent questions contain NSFW in the title.
Do we really need to do this? I think the title should be enough to understand if one should read the question when being in a specific place. We had questions that have not been tagged with NSFW; what is the difference between the past questions, and the recent ones?

To notice there have been a similar question about using asterisks with vulgar words appearing in titles (What should we do about question titles containing vulgar words?).

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I am pinging this for the purposes of editing current and future stuffs. It appears that the consensus is that nsfw should not appear in question titles. Anyone serious object if I start trimming them out? –  MrHen May 11 '11 at 17:43
    
@mrhen questions should neither be tagged, nor contain in the title, "nsfw". However per my answer below, titles should be mildly censored in accordance with network policies. (Bodies, comments, etc can of course be explicit as necessary.) –  Jeff Atwood Jan 11 '12 at 1:13
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My reaction: "NSFW? Ooh, wanna have a read!" –  Andrew Grimm Oct 27 '12 at 10:14

4 Answers 4

up vote 15 down vote accepted

No, but we do ask that you mildly censor question titles because those can show up on the Stack Exchange homepage and other places where seeing an extremely vile curse word is definitely not welcome.

In the body, and the tags, you may do as you see fit.

(for prior art on this, see the "breasts" question, etc)

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I don't think we do. There is a 'vulgar' tag and it should be sufficient to tag a question with that if it concerns language that may cause offence. Users can make use of the 'ignored tags' feature to filter out this type of question if they wish.

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I think the [NSFW] is for the titles as read in the question list. Tags are useful for searching but not usable for scanning by eye (it's hard to make sure that you're catching 'vulgar' tags when reading the question titles). I'm not saying that NSFW is really needed, just that having a tag doesn't suffice for the same purpose as '[NSFW]'. –  Mitch Apr 11 '11 at 21:09
    
By default, ignored tags fade questions but you can set them to hide the questions entirely (user -> prefs). –  z7sg Ѫ Apr 11 '11 at 23:24

OK, speaking as someone who has recently added "NSFW" to some question titles, here was my reasoning:

  • Some workplaces have (crazy, stupid) policies where even browsing to a page that has swear words on can get you a visit from the IT department (or worse).
  • Some people really, really, don't like seeing offensive language. (Personally I don't have a problem with it, especially in written form - after all, it's just a word! - but if there's something simple and easy we can do to avoid offending such people, without detracting from the value of the site, so much the better.)
  • For the questions I'm talking about, someone who wasn't aware of the British usage of those words - or even someone who was - would not necessarily expect the questions to contain the very strong language that they did. (It's perfectly possible to ask the question - and answer it - without using stronger language. That didn't happen, and there's nothing wrong with that, but it might catch someone out if they weren't expecting it.)

Therefore it seemed reasonable to flag the questions in a way that would let people working for organisations with over-strict policies, and people who dislike such strong language, know what they might be in for.

(There doesn't seem to be a consistent tagging scheme at the moment - I've seen , , , . I agree tags could be used in this way, but as has been pointed out, the tags don't necessarily appear in all the places where the title might...)

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  • I think it is common courtesy, like obscuring taboo words with asterixes (asterices? asterigma?); that is, it is not -necessary- but why not.

  • I would think that readers of this area would be accustomed to use vs. mention, so it shouldn't be necessary at all.

  • For the most likely item in questions What exactly does 'fap' mean?, if NSFW is wanted at all, it would be for this. I had never heard of the word 'fap' before, and so guess especially so for non-native speakers. And that means it is always the case that things are not self-evident.

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The word you are looking for is asterisks —the plural of asterisk not asterix. –  nohat Apr 12 '11 at 0:14
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@nohat: argh - too many comics in French class. –  Mitch Apr 12 '11 at 0:40

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