A complaint over use of allegedly offensive language in a Globe and Mail story about a new
synagogue was dismissed by the National NewsMedia Council.
Jacob Mendlovic objected to use of the term “tuchus” to refer to how many people can be
seated during worship.
He argued that the word is not a substitute for the inoffensive “buttock”. He filed a reference to
Yiddish words in English, which described the word as “vulgar”, and noted the Globe’s style
book states words which may offend readers should be avoided.
Asked for an apology, The Globe and Mail spoke to the reporter about recognizing potential for
cultural sensitivity, and conveyed that information to the complainant.
In reviewing the article, the NewsMedia Council found the word was used as a casual reference,
similar to the description of ‘bums on pews’ in Christian places of worship. On that basis and in
view of the guidance given to the reporter, the complaint was dismissed.
Article: “Why it was high time for a new place of worship”
Published: September 5, 2015