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Only in California?

My guess is that feds don't often have to deal with raunchy language issues -- well, outside of the Secretary of Defense's office. (Just a bit of a joke!) But as a California native, I had seen some early coverage of a court case that was quite the buzz in Hollywood. Here is the SJMN's synopsis of the case... and the California Supreme Court's decision, which was handed down today.

Is raunchy language acceptable in the workplace? For most of us, no. But if you're writing a TV sitcom like ``Friends,'' it's not only OK, it's even necessary, the California Supreme Court ruled today.

In a 7-0 ruling, the court agreed with Warner Bros. Television Productions that vulgar language in writers' meetings was part of the creative process behind the long-running NBC comedy (which chronicled the personal lives and career struggles of six single friends who lived in absurdly fabulous apartments in a San Fernando Valley studio back-lot version of Manhattan).

The ruling rejected a claim by Amaani Lyle, whose job was to transcribe the meetings, that putting up with the constant sexual remarks amounted to harassment against women. ``Most of the sexually coarse and vulgar language at issue did not involve and was not aimed at plaintiff or other women in the workplace,'' Justice Marvin Baxter wrote, according to an Associated Press report.

Baxter, however, warned the rest of us that ``language similar to that at issue here might well establish actionable harassment depending on the circumstances.''

Posted by Christopher Dorobek on Apr 20, 2006 at 12:15 PM


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