Last Thursday, the good people at EA Sports and Madden 15 released an online tool as addictive as the best interactive Google Doodles: The Giferator. This being the internet, we can’t have anything nice. Our favorite deviants on Twitter started stress-testing the tool to see what they could get away with posting.
As more people have played with the Giferator, they started to see certain words didn’t make it through. It’s no surprise that George Carlin’s “Seven Words You Can’t Say on TV” were a no go. To the disappointment of the retired two-time Super Bowl Champion cornerback Randall Gay, you can’t type his last name. And you can’t use “cocaine” with a gif of Johnny Manziel (though you can type “yayo” if you’re hip with the kids’ slang).
Using the Giferator, you start to see the soft underbelly of what the NFL (and its partners) sees as PR embarrassments. Though you could select any of his Baltimore Ravens teammates to animate, you couldn’t type Ray Rice’s last name, probably in response to the fact that he’s currently suspended for two games for a horrendous act of domestic violence. The same goes for not being able to type Welker, because the Denver Broncos wide receiver is serving out his own suspension under possibly funny circumstances. And when it comes to the concussion crisis the league faces? EA Sports wants no part of that, banning brain, injury, concussion and knockout.
And of course there’s a long list of ethnic slurs you can’t enter. You’re banned from insulting:
Whites (cracker and redneck are prohibited).
Then, on Saturday, journalist Patrick Hruby observed on Twitter that you could make the gif below:
And that’s the problem EA Sports and Madden 15 run into. The NFL has sanctioned a Native American slur as a team name for the Washington franchise, so it’s pretty hard to ban that one. But that doesn’t mean it should be a field day on all other slurs against Native Americans.