It isn’t just license plates with clear messages that can get banned (and in one recent case, challenged legally) — each state’s Department of Motor Vehicles has a lengthy list of prohibited phrases it’s had to get hip to, including text speak. Because heaven forbid someone slip in a naughty word. OMFG, right? They’re onto us.
GovernmentAttic.org (via Boing Boing) has gone through all the proper channels and asked various states for lists of which configurations of text and numerals are prohibited on plates, and some of the results are pretty funny.
For example, in Wisconsin you can’t get “0MFGL0L” even if you get crafty and switch out the letter “O” for zeroes. Because that translates as, “Oh my f*&%$#g God Laugh Out Loud.” While no, that’s not racist or hate speech or something totally vile, someone could be offended by that, a situation the DMVs are trying to prevent.
The resulting lists are a bit contradictory and full of holes, points out CNET. Arizona won’t allow ROFLMAO (the word ass is in there!) but it doesn’t appear on Arkansas’ banned list. Perhaps someone just hasn’t bothered to request it yet?
State Forbidden Personalized License Plates [GovernmentAttic.org]
Prohibited license plates [Boing Boing]
Banned license plates: DMV is hip to your txtspeak [CNET]