The “pommie bashing” business name deemed too offensive to be registered

There’s a number of interesting Australian business names out there: A Salt and Battery, Curl Up and Dye, Ones and Twos
New Zealand

There’s a number of interesting Australian business names out there: A Salt and Battery, Curl Up and Dye, Ones and Twos plumbing, Massive Weiners, Holy Sheet – just to name a few. But when it comes to an Aussie slang term for our British comrades, it’s absolutely out of the question.

According to Australian Financial Review, the business name “pommiebasher” cannot be registered because it may be offensive to some people if the word is taken out of the sporting rivalry context between Australia and England, the Administrative Appeals Tribunal found.

A sports merchandise business tried to register the business name “pommiebasher” but the Australian Securities and Investments Commission refused because it considered the name to be offensive.

It’s a fairly unassuming business, selling Pommiebasher-branded merchandises such as T-shirts, beer and stubbie holders via pommiebasher.com.

Perhaps the bets part of this story is the irony that the business owner is a Brit, and is more than OK with the term.

The business says they “celebrate the unique rivalry and camaraderie of the Aussies and the Brits, and everyone else in sports”.

“It may be said that we Pommiebashers yap a bloody blue streak now and then. Sometimes we might even get a bit carried away—especially after a few coldies. But when it comes to the importance of our shared history and heritage with the old Pommie rival, we’re always as sober as a judge.

“Aussies and Poms have long been rivals on the sports field, but we’ve also been comrades on the battlefield—and we know our fellow Pommiebashers would want that honoured and preserved.

“We’re not at liberty to let the details slip just yet, but we’re putting in hard yards to secure a little ripper of a deal that will see 10% of all revenues from Pommiebasher products put towards protecting that history”, says the website.

Interestingly, the advertising regulator Advertising Standards Board found the word “pom” was generally acceptable in advertising as it is a term with affectionate overtones.

The Pommiebasher website also states, “The driving force behind Pommiebasher is a bloke by the name of Peter Hanlon. Believe it or not, he was born a Pom”.

“Peter set on a journey of cultural discovery that led to the development of the Pommiebasher brand: a fun celebration of the history, rivalry and mutual respect”.

So if Peter doesn’t find it offensive, but the Government does, what do others think? We’d love to hear your thoughts! Is ‘pom’ an offensive word?

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