Tag Archives: mark duell

“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:

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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.

“People leave things in hotels!” says hotel chain

What’s the weirdest thing to have been left in a hotel room? According to the Independent and the Daily Mail, the answer might be weirder than you imagine:

A python, a winning EuroMillions lottery ticket, Harry Potter’s wand and breast implants: just some of the bizarre items left in UK hotel rooms last year

A python, a winning EuroMillions lottery ticket, Harry Potter’s wand, breast implants, a bucket of live crabs and a diamond-encrusted iPhone have topped a list of the most bizarre items people have left behind in hotel rooms.

Budget hotel chain Travelodge has named some of the items relegated to their lost and found offices across the country last year.

Source: The Independent, 2 January 2013

Breast implants, a bucket of live crabs and a £10,000 Tiffany engagement ring… some of the bizarre items left behind in hotel rooms
– 20,000 books left at Travelodge hotels – a third were Fifty Shades of Grey
– Also forgotten were £50,000 Rolex and an 8ft pop-up spray tanning booth
– 76,500 forgotten cuddly bears reunited with their owners by hotel staff
– 200 Queen Elizabeth masks were found at a Travelodge hotel in Windsor
– Also left behind were pet python called Monty and a pantomime horse

It’s an impressive list of items – an original Harry Potter wand, breast implants, a bucket of live crabs, a pet python, a £10,000 Tiffany engagement ring and a set of four Power Rangers costumes.

And all of them were left behind in Travelodge hotels last year, along with a winning EuroMillions ticket, a £50,000 Rolex watch, an 8ft pop-up spray tanning booth – and even a pantomime horse.

There are no prizes for being able to spot that this story is, in fact, a press release from the prolific PR department of Travelodge – the eye-catchingly varied nature of the items left behind proving perfect tabloid fodder.