On January 12, the CBSC ordered all Canadian radio stations to stop broadcasting Dire Straits’ 1984 hit ‘Money For Nothing’ because of the word ‘faggot’ (used three times throughout the song).
For many music fans, the CBSC’s decision comes as a shock.
‘Money For Nothing’ has been played countless times on various radio stations across the nation for over 25 years. Dire Straits has also won many prestigious music wards because of this mega-hit single:
1986 Grammy for Record of the Year / 1986 American Music Award for Record of the Year / 1986 9 MTV Video Music Awards / Billboard #1 single September 21 ‐ October 5, 1985.
Even if you’re not a fan of Dire Straits, you’ve probably heard the song at least once in your life and you’ll recognize the controversial lyrics in question; “the little faggot with the earring and the make-up / yeah, buddy, that’s his own hair / that little faggot’s got his own jet airplane / that little faggot, he’s a millionaire…”
But on February 1, 2010, a listener of CHOZ-FM, a New Foundland based radio station, filed a complaint to the CBSC.
“I find this extremely offensive as a member of the LGBT community and feel that there is absolutely no valid reason for such discriminatory marks to be played on-air,” said the unnamed listener from an excerpt of the complaint to the CBSC.
Nearly a year later the CBSC made their decision on the controversial lyrics.
“The CBSC concluded that the presence of the word “faggot” in the song contravened the Human Rights Clauses of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters’ (CAB) Code of Ethics and Equitable Portrayal Code.”