Canada lifts ban on Dire Straits’ ‘Money For Nothing’

1985 hit was pulled due to use of 'faggot'

Canadian censors have lifted their ban on Dire Straits‘ 1985 hit ‘Money For Nothing’.

The Canadian Broadcast Standards Council (CBSC) announced yesterday that they were reversing their decision to stop radio stations playing the MTV-era anthem.

The song was pulled from national playlists in January after a listener complained about the use of the word “faggot“, which features in the song three times, on Newfoundland radio station CHOZ-FM.


‘Money For Nothing’ was immediately deemed a breach of the Human Rights Clauses of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters’ (CAB) Code of Ethics and Equitable Portrayal Code.

The decision to stop the song being played caused a split in Canada, some supporting the ruling, others outraged by such censorship.

“It made us look silly in the eyes of the broadcast community around the world,” said writer and broadcasting veteran Alan Cross. He told Rolling Stone.

I talked to people from the US. and the UK and they were like, ‘What’s wrong with you people? Don’t you get it? It’s a joke. It’s a satire. You didn’t understand the context?

The decision to go back on the ban was made since after the CBSC learned that alternative versions of ‘Money For Nothing’ have existed since 1985, proving “the band and the composer considered that there was a less offensive way of presenting the song to the public long ago”.

They added that the context in which the word is used demonstrates “the composer’s language appears not to have had an iota of malevolent or insulting intention”.

Watch the video for Dire Straits’ lasting hit ‘Money For Nothing’ below.