Ofcom reveals audiences find ‘Karen’ and ‘gammon’ mildly offensive – and people are crying ‘censorship’

Ofcom headquarters building
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Terms such as ‘Karen’, ‘boomer’, ‘gammon’ and ‘Terf’ are mildly offensive to UK audiences, according to research conducted by the communications regulator Ofcom.

The list of political references, totalling 10 words altogether, also include ‘snowflake’, ‘Remoaner’ and ‘Nat’, with ‘Femi-Nazi’ and ‘Yoon’ being the only two considered moderately offensive by respondents.

“These findings will help broadcasters to make these often finely balanced judgements and better inform their decisions about the broadcasting of offensive language and other content.

“The report also helps us at Ofcom understand and take account of audience’s views when making complex and nuanced decisions about potentially offensive content on TV and radio, while having full regard to freedom of expression,” said Adam Baxter, director of standards and audience protection at the watchdog.

Despite Ofcom stating that these are the views of audience members and that it “doesn’t necessarily mean we think these terms are offensive”, people have since expressed anger at Ofcom, slamming the findings as “censorship”.

Others were poking fun at the study:

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And in case you were wondering what the full 10 words were and where they rank:

  • A Karen – mildly offensive: Defined by Urban Dictionary as a “middle aged woman, typically blonde, makes solutions to others’ problems an inconvenience to her although she isn’t remotely affected”.
  • Boomer – mildly offensive: Referring to the ‘baby boomer’ generation, which Vox says are born “roughly between 1946 and 1965”.
  • Femi-Nazi – moderately offensive: According to, it’s “an offensive slur for a feminist whose views are considered radical or extreme”.
  • Gammon – mildly offensive: “Someone whose opinions are very right-wing, used mainly about white men who are middle-aged”, according to the Cambridge Dictionary.
  • Libt**d – mildly offensive: A term based on the ableist slur ‘r****d’ to belittle liberals.
  • Nat – mildly offensive: Short for nationalist, referring to someone who wants independence for Scotland
  • Remoaner – mildly offensive: Defined by Collins Dictionary as “a person who continues to argue that Britain should remain in the European Union despite the vote to leave at the referendum in 2016”.
  • Snowflake – mildly offensive: disparaging term to describe someone “regarded or treated as unique or special” or “overly sensitive”.
  • Terf – mildly offensive: A Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminist, who “believes that a trans woman’s gender identity is not legitimate and who is hostile to the inclusion of trans people and gender-diverse people in the feminist movement” (
  • Yoon – moderately offensive: Short for unionist, referring to someone who wants Scotland to remain in the Union. It’s the opposite of a ‘nat’.

Once again, those who often mock those easily offended are offended by something.

The fact they’re offended by a list of offensive words is just hilarious irony.

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