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Tiscali gets the 'Hump' over Herbert

Why Humphreys is a dirty word

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Tiscali refused to give a pensioner an email addy with his own name - because part of it was deemed "offensive" by the ISP.

Herbert Humphreys, 89, was so shocked by Tiscali's stand on the word "hump", he told his story to consumer affairs magazine Which?. "They said my name contains profanity, as it includes the word hump," Herbert told the mag.

As a result the ISP said he couldn't have an email name bearing his surname.

Asked to comment a spokeswoman for the ISP told us: "This is an automated part of our sign-up process designed to protect our users, ensure they stay within our acceptable use policy and prevent anyone creating an email identity that may be offensive to others.

"This is constantly reviewed but by its nature will block certain harmless addresses," she said.

Indeed. Just spare a thought for poor Mr and Mrs Cockerell from Scunthorpe who've just moved from Essex. They love gardening and are particularly fond of Alan Titchmarsh and read his books in earnest to ensure that Mrs Cockerell's prize bush is kept neatly trimmed.

All completely harmless, you might think, but Tiscali's filters would be working overtime to keep out this unpleasant lot. ®

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