After posting a tweet advertising writing opportunities for the ‘LAD bible’, the University of Manchester Careers service were embroiled in controversy last week.
The tweet, sent from the Careers Service’s ‘Manchester Media Club’ account, invited potential contributors to email samples of their work to a member of staff at the LAD bible.
A screenshot of the tweet was posted on Facebook by Women’s Officer Tabz O’Brien-Butcher, prompting comments labeling the tweet an “absolute disgrace” and “unbelievable”.
Tabz later told The Mancunion she was “shocked” to see the tweet posted.
“[The LAD bible] is a a well known misogynistic website which trivialises sexual assault, demeans women students and encourages the bullying of young men who do not adhere to their sexist standards”, Tabz said.
The Media Club have since deleted the tweet and posted an apology.
“We apologise for inadvertently posting a tweet yesterday re: writing opportunities for an apparently misogynistic website,” they tweeted.
The decision to delete the tweet was made “to stop any unintentional offence caused to our students/graduates, with immediate effect”, said Head of Careers Information, Advice and Guidance Andrew Whitmore. “It contravened our policies [regarding] advertising opportunities.”
The Careers service’s policies, available online, state that they “reserve the right not to advertise vacancies or voluntary opportunities which in our sole opinion are not suitable for advertising through our service, or which we feel are not in the best interests of our students and graduates”.
Vacancies that “are associated with adult content” fall under this definition, according to the website. Posts on the LAD bible website are frequently sexual in nature: one current post suggests “whether it is my destiny to turn a lesbian back into a meat lover.”
Andrew Whitmore continued, “We take these matters very seriously.
“It was re-tweeted from MediaMuppet [a media job aggregator] in error.”
After receiving official complaints from women students about sexism on campus, Tabz stated that she was “absolutely disgusted and appalled”.
“I’m also angry, but not shocked. Angry that women students have to deal with this. Unsurprised because unfortunately, as Women’s Officer, I hear about similar incidences all of the time.”
A recent NUS survey found that 50 per cent of students had experienced some form of ‘laddism’ on campus.
The first Women’s Campaign Forum of the year is set to take place next week, and is entitled “We’re bored of the BANTER!: Tackling Lad Culture on Campus”.
It invites students to “share experiences of Lad Culture on campus” and “discuss the impact of this culture”.
The event description also says, “Together, we will look at how we can challenge this culture and start to develop a creative campus wide campaign that will call out Lad Culture at Manchester and make the change you want to see on campus!”
Tabz added, “It sometimes feels as though ‘Lad Culture’ is weaved into the fabric of campus life.
“But working together, we can unpick these harmful threads and start to weave a new more inclusive culture in our Universities!”
The LAD bible did not respond to requests for comment.
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