LOL! Wisconsin group finds the future the hard way

WTF?! That's likely what members of a three-decades-old Wisconsin lobbying group said amongst themselves after they learned that the initials for Wisconsin Tourism Federation had become a very popular abbreviation for a crude inquiry that litters all-too-many text messages, Twitter and Facebook entries.

The organization, which has 16 members, became the butt of jokes, as it were, for its WTF logo, which was displayed prominently on the group's Web site -- that is, until July when it was quietly replaced with a new one.

The group's lead lobbyist, Chet Gerlach, told the Associated Press on Wednesday that the federation made the change after the meaning of the common text message lingo was brought to their attention. It had no way of knowing 30 years ago that the letters would take on a whole new, if somewhat unwholesome, meaning. But times do change.

Tourism in "America's Dairyland" is big business, growing 2.7% last year to $13 billion. Those expenditures, the group said, generated more than 310,000 jobs and $2 billion in state and local taxes.

So WTF is the group's new name? How about: Tourism Federation of Wisconsin, or TFW. Perhaps in another 30 years the organization will have to change its name once more -- especially if any of the current entries for TFW on become as commonplace as WTF.
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