Tag Archives: jennifer smith

“The man in your bed with probably isn’t right for you, ladies!” says bedding company

“The man in your bed with probably isn’t right for you, ladies!” says bedding company

Diligently watering the greener grass fantasies of married couples across the nation, this latest pseudoresearch comes not from a relationship think-tank or university psychology department, but from a soft furnishing company:

Emma Heald of the Fine Bedding Company said: ‘The overwhelming majority of Brits believe that The One is out there somewhere and it is just a matter of finding them.

‘Many admit that, though they are married, they have still not have found their perfect love.

Charming stuff from the sheet-sellers, there.

“Britain’s Horniest students sleep around!” says website looking to help students sleep around

Did you hear the one about Britain’s Horniest Student? The Mail, Metro, Star and Huffington Post have all told the tale today of Elina Desaine, recently awarded the controversial title:

Girl who bedded three men a week named ‘Britain’s horniest student’ in revolting online competition where young women are encouraged to have sex at university for cash prize

A computer science student who boasts of sleeping with up to three men every week has been named Britain’s Horniest Student after entering a degrading online competition.

Elina Desaine, 20, doesn’t even know the names of all her sexual partners, but tries to keep track with handwritten list using descriptions such as ‘French guy’ and ‘third year’ to recall her trysts.

Source: Daily Mail, 14th November 2013

If you’re thinking to yourself “I didn’t know that was a real award”, give yourself five points for memory, but minus five points for skepticism – it’s not a real award. Instead, it’s a publicity stunt competition by the website ShagAtUni:

The University of Exeter student received £500 and a year’s supply of condoms after winning the competition run by controversial ‘no strings attached fun’ website, Shagatuni.com.

This is literally therefore nothing more than an overt advert for a sleazy hook-up site, disguised as news. In fact, here’s the full press release up on their website – demonstrating just how much the media lifted and churned the PR copy they were given.

This isn’t the first time ShagAtUni – a site whose motivation and business model is near-cryptic in its opaqueness, given the name they’ve elected to call themselves – has made the news with this competition. In fact, launching the competition itself made just the same splash in the Daily Mail, back in early October.

Given the reward in the competition – almost £1000 in total – and the nature of the site promoting it, it’s fair to say the exact details of the winner’s story are open to questioning.

Of course, that this is nothing but an advert for a sleazy website won’t stop the endless stream of slut-shaming on Twitter – demonstrating neatly the damaging and detrimental effect this level of Bad PR can have on the perceptions of women, of the young, and of the newspapers.

Here’s an ongoing selection of the public reaction to this non-story – see if you can spot a common trend:


Ultimately, as ever, the only message of this article is this: ShagAtUni is a thing, and they want you to go there and use their service. Everything else is just a wrapper.

“You can’t survive without computer literacy!” says touch-typing course

What would you say were the most essential skills in our modern world? Ability to tell when a Nigerian Prince is pulling your leg? Understanding of exactly what a PPI claim is and isn’t? Aptitude at determining adverts from news articles? Nope! 

Forget darning, baking and fixing the car – the skills you REALLY need in the 21st century are setting the satnav and putting your rubbish in the right bin

Connecting to WiFi, knowing how to use Google and tuning HD TVs were listed today as some of the most useful skills of modern life.

In a survey which polled 2,000 adults, using a self-service checkout,online banking and operating satnav replaced talents such as knitting and baking to be named the most ‘essential’ capabilities in British culture.

Only 10 of the 50 most important skills didn’t involve modern technology, with cooking and using a calculator among them, while participants counted sewing and letter writing as skills that are no longer needed.

Source: Daily Mail, 7th September 2013

Oh darn it, now WiFi is listed as an ‘essential’

USING WiFi and self-service supermarket checkouts are among modern life’s essential skills, a poll shows.

Searching the internet, mastering online banking and being able to touch-type are also in the top 50.

But darning, knitting and being able to bake fresh bread are said to be no longer necessary for everyday life.

Source: Daily Express, 7th September 2013

Whichever way you look at it, as long as you only look at it the way these news stories present it, having technical skills is much more important than the kind of skills that were useful when Granny was just a young girl. Which is a handy hook, given the company behind the ‘research’:

A spokesman for touch-typing course www.kaz-type.com, who carried out the poll said: ‘For generations, there are skills which have been passed down from parent to child, because they were deemed so essential to everyday life.

‘However, it seems technology is wiping out some of those skills as gadgets can now do it for us.

‘The internet has become such a huge part of life that it’s so important to know how to use it, while built-in address books on mobile phones mean we no longer have to memorise the phone numbers of loved ones.

‘If anything, touch-typing is only becoming more important over time as so many careers now rely on computers more than ever for their day-to-day work.’

While it seems that touch-typing can be learnt via an online course, it appears that subtlety can’t. 

Still, what about that ‘research’, which proved that once-cherished skills are now worthless? Where did that come from? I’m positive regular readers won’t be at all surprised to discover that the ‘research’ – which also featured in the print editions of the Mail, Express and Telegraph – stemmed from a survey conducted by Bad PR regulars OnePoll

Press release in hand, a quick check over at Churnalism.com shows that Daily Mail journalist Jennifer Smith took a whopping 86% of the original press release into her article.

Touch-typing is surprisingly easy when you’re only doing 14% of the work, of course.