I am wanting to use profanity in a domain name and site branding but I was wondering if it could present any unexpected issues for me. Turning on SafeSearch I noticed it still returned results with profanity as long as the content wasn't sexual or too over the top so I am hoping to be fine on the SEO front.

Just a little backstory: I am working creating/distributing a series of software/hardware based instruments that are more aimed at the DIY aesthetic. My target audience is fellow weird musicians and it isn't my goal to build this into a big company. I decided to brand it with "F***ing" as part of the name. I never plan on buying any advertising for this. So I don't plan on using Adwords and the like. My previous DIY gear got around basically by word of mouth and some blog/forum coverage. And while I am not aiming to offend people, trying to not offend people is not a concern of mine.

I really like the name. It fits for this particular project. I just can't help think that I could possibly shoot myself in the foot though. So based on my conditions, what are the potential downfalls if I pull the trigger on the name?

  • Google and other search engines reserve the right to change such things, so, while you may not be filtered out now, you could be later. Oct 12, 2016 at 19:04

1 Answer 1


This really depends on the demographics of the target market for the site. These are the key things that will impact access and potentially success.

User Location

Users browsing from a public library, or students browsing from a University might have to deal with firewall filtering. Home networks may have web filtering enabled as well if the user is on a parent's home network. If the users are older, then they may try to access the URL from a workplace where the same firewall rules apply. Also it might stick out more like a sore thumb in the firewall logs, causing your users to be penalized for their access. They should be able to access on a mobile device without issue.

Individual Content Filtering

Content filter is available in a variety of places, such as the SafeSearch you've mentioned as well as Antivirus software and browsers. Though SafeSearch is really for image and video filtering with explicit content. This really depends on the setup of the user's system, their browser, and how restricted their searches are.


Some people may not take the site seriously at the beginning, and may assume the brand is simply trying to get people to download the software for the shock and awe factor. This is a good write-up about using profanity in content. Additionally if the site you're creating isn't modern, meaning optimized for mobile and desktops, then you may not show up as high in search results as you would like. Usually if someone does a specific web search for a brand that is an exact match it will show up in the results, provided that it hasn't been marked offensive in metadata elsewhere.

It's always a risk.

Branding and PR

When it comes to actually spreading the word through something other than advertising you'll likely need to use magazines and other media. Depending on their own biases, target markets, and restrictions, your brands that include profanity might be altered, which could make it difficult to have a mention in a publication. Some magazines simply won't print the word f*ck.

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