The F-word in court: is it a record?

Lord Woolman may have set a new record for the number of times the F-word has appeared in a civil case judgment in his opinion in McCormack v Hamilton Academical Football Club [2010] CSOH 124, issued on 1 September 2010.

Mr McCormack had been sacked for gross misconduct as assistant manager of the football club after a mere two months in post.  His claim was for wrongful dismissal.  One of the major aspects of the alleged misconduct was Mr McCormack's swearing and in particular his regular use of the F-word in public and in the relative privacy of the dressing-room.  Narrating the evidence, Lord Woolman finds himself forced to use the word also, no less than six times.  There were also a number of other incidents in which Mr McCormack's speech and conduct showed himself not inclined to tone it down a bit when in the presence of a member of the opposite gender (the club physiotherapist was female).

Nonetheless Lord Woolman comes to the conclusion that Mr McCormack was indeed wrongfully dismissed and puts the case out By Order for assessment of the damages to be awarded.  There is however no elaboration on the meaning and significance of the F-word and its derivatives such as we find in the English passing off and cybersquatting case French Connection Ltd v Sutton [2000] ETMR 341 (the case also responsible for your correspondent's only use of the F-word in print: see Contemporary Intellectual Property: Law and Policy chapter 17).