Virgin have apologised after new profanity checking software starred out perfectly innocent TV and film titles for containing ‘inappropriate language’. The new system, which automatically checks the Virgin TV programme guide, went into over-drive over the weekend with programmes such as the BBC Four show: The History of Canals showed up as ‘The History of Ca**ls’.
The censorship also spread to the Will Smith film ‘Hancock’ - which became ‘Hanc**k, the popular BBC Two show, ‘Never Mind the Buzzcocks’ – which showed up as ‘Never Mind the Buzzc**ks’ and even the middle of the name of London football club, ‘Arsenal’, was blocked out in a bid to remove inappropriate language from the TV menu.
Even in the description of a BBC Victoria comedy adventure, The Bleak Old Shop of Stuff, which is in the style of Charles Dickens, the famous author’s name was censored, appearing as ‘Charles D***ens’ on the menu. The piece of software is understood to have now been fixed, allowing Virgin Media’s 3.8 million television customers to see the titles of all TV shows in full on the EPG.
A Virgin Media statement said: “Over the weekend a temporarily over-zealous profanity checker took offence at certain programme titles. The altered titles have been swiftly an*lysed and we’re fixing any remaining glitches."