Here's your daily Wall Street-related laugh -- after getting busted for knowingly selling self-described "sh*tty deals" to clients, Goldman Sachs has now decided that it must stop employees from using naughty words in company emails:
The New York company is telling employees that they will no longer be able to get away with profanity in electronic messages. That means all 34,000 traders, investment bankers and other Goldman employees must restrain themselves from using a vast vocabulary of oft-used dirty words on Wall Street, including the six-letter expletive that came back to haunt the company at a Senate hearing in April.
"[B]oy, that timberwo[l]f was one s— deal," Thomas Montag, who helped run Goldman's securities business, wrote in a June 2007 email that was repeatedly referred to at the hearing.
Mr. Montag, who couldn't be reached for comment, wouldn't be allowed to send that email under Goldman's sanitized communications policy, which is being enforced by screening software. Even swear words spelled with asterisks are out.
Oh, now where's the fun in that! How can get an accurate picture of the Real Wall Street works if traders aren't allowed to email each other messages such as "LOL OMG I CANT BELIEVE THE DUMB-A** C***S***ER BOUGHT THAT S****Y M*****F***ING DEAL I CAN'T WAIT 2 SHORT THAT B***H ROFL!!!!1!"
Man, it's hard out here for a pimp these days. Continuing:
A Goldman spokeswoman said: "Of course we have policies about the use of appropriate language and we are always looking for ways to ensure that they are enforced."
"We always tell our f***ing traders not to mouth the f**k off about the s****y deals they make over email," he added. "That sort of talk must be reserved for company restrooms only."
The new edict—delivered verbally, of course—has left some employees wondering if the rule also applies to shorthand for expletives such as "WTF" or legitimate terms that sound similar to curses.
Traders are now banned from writing things like, "OMFG THAT MF HAS NO IDEA WTF IS ABOUT 2 HAPPEN LMAO! I PURCHASED CDS ON THOSE POS SECURITIES FIVE MINUTES AFTER HE BOUGHT THEM FROM ME -- NOW WHEN HE BLOWS UP I WILL BE EFFING RICH LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL!!!!"
This new Goldman policy is a classic example of what we professional philosophers call "Missing the damn point." No one is taking offense at the fact that they used four-letter words in company emails. The offensive thing is that they allegedly designed collateralized debt obligations filled with crappy mortgages and then sold them to unwitting clients and then shorting securities in the CDOs through credit default swaps.
This sort of behavior, needless to say, is much more offensive than using the s-word over and over again in emails.