Canada Bans 1985 Dire Straits Song ‘Money for Nothing’ from Airplay Over ‘Faggot’ Lyric


The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council yesterday banned Dire Straits' 1985 track "Money for Nothing" from Canadian airplay over its use of the word "faggot". Those of you old enough to be familiar with the track's release in the mid-80's may remember that the song was sometimes edited for radio for the same reasons.

Apparently, Canada's just getting around to it:

A listener to radio station CHOZ-FM in St. John's complained last year that the song includes the word “faggot” in its lyrics and is discriminatory to gays.

The broadcaster argued that the song had been played countless times since its release decades ago and has won music industry awards.

A CBSC panel concluded that the word “faggot,” even if once acceptable, has evolved to become unacceptable in most circumstances.

The panel noted that Money for Nothing would be acceptable for broadcast if suitably edited.

Here's the CBSC's ruling.

In November '85, Dire Straits Mark Knopfler discussed the lyric controversy

"I got an objection from the editor of a gay newspaper in London - he actually said it was 'below the belt.' Apart from the fact that there are stupid gay people as well as stupid other people, it suggests that maybe you can't let it have so many meanings - you have to be direct. In fact, I'm still in two minds as to whether it's a good idea to write songs that aren't in the first person, to take on other characters. The singer in 'Money for Nothing' is a real ignoramus, hard hat mentality - somebody who sees everything in financial terms. I mean, this guy has a grudging respect for rock stars. He sees it in terms of, well, that's not working and yet the guys rich: that's a good scam. He isn't sneering."

Watch the 'Money for Nothing' video, AFTER THE JUMP...

Posted January 13, 2011 at 8:11am ETC by Andy Towle
in gay slurs, music, News