Will Britney Spears "If You Seek Amy" be censored for radio?
Profanity in pop songs is old news. Hell, the chorus to Christina Aguilera's recent single, "Keeps Gettin' Better," kicks off with the phrase, "Some days I'm a super bi---." That one is easy enough for radio stations to edit out in order to avoid any fines from the FCC or threats to yank their licenses.
But what will they do with a new single from a major artist that doesn't actually contain a four-letter word, but rather spells it out in a not-so-subtle way? That dilemma is beginning to dawn on top-40 radio programmers across the country as the third single from album, "If U Seek Amy," starts to make its way to the airwaves.
The cheeky title (try saying it fast) joins the tradition of album titles like Van Halen's 1991 For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge. The chorus doesn't even try to make grammatical sense of the phrase: "But all of the boys and all of the girls are begging to if you seek Amy."
The spelled-out profanity puts the song into a legal gray area for radio stations.
"It's OK to put in on an album, have fun with it, but we're publicly owned, you know?" said Patti Marshall, program director at Cincinnati's Q102, a pop station in a decidedly conservative Midwestern market. "We have a responsibility to the public ... you put this ... out and act like we're all fuddy-duddies, like we're trying to make moral judgments. It's not about us. It's about the mom in the minivan with her 8-year-old."