How to respond to a crude sex prank

How to respond to a crude sex prank
The new logo 
for the University of St. Andrews

A realistic-looking notice containing the school logo appeared on the door of library toilets at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, explaining the policy of the university in regards to certain behaviors:

Masturbation Notice

Masturbation in the library toilet is a violation of the University of St Andrews Library Regulations

The recently refurbished toilet floors are not designed to handle your semen!

The excessive amount of semen stain on the floor cost thousands of pounds to be removed professionally and must be reflected in tuition fee rises for next year. It’s YOUR money.

Please go home and masturbate if you are bored.

Please enquire at the Library Help Desk if you have any questions. Thank you for your cooperation.

A man named Steve asked for a university response using a FoI (Freedom of Information) request and received the following letter:

Dear Steve

Thank you for your FoI Request re "Masturbation Notice".

The notice to which you refer is not an official university notice. It was a student prank, and regrettably not even an original prank. The notice appears to be a copycat issue of a similar text which appeared recently at Durham and Lancaster universities and a number of universities in the States. A quick check on Google should give you more information about these incidents should you require it.

A strong clue that the notice is fake is the line "Please go home and masturbate if you are bored." As a matter of policy, the University would never encourage students to go home during term time.

I understand that two copies of the notice were attached, with chewing gum, to doors of the male toilets in the University of St Andrews Main Library on or about the afternoon of Sunday November 13th 2011. The notices were removed by Library staff shortly afterwards.

Far from having a policy on masturbation or outlawing the practice, as the bogus notice alleged, the University encourages the study of it, academically at least. Among the titles in the University Library is "Solitary Sex : A Cultural History of Masturbation" by Thomas Walter Laqueur, pub Zone Books, New York, 2003.

Available from the short loan section, and as of 3 p.m. this afternoon, one copy still available to borrow.

I trust this answers your request, but if you require any further information, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Kind regards

Niall Scott

Niall Scott
Director of Corporate Communications
University of St Andrews

– "Masturbation notice" What Do They Know>>
– Image of the notice>>
– University knocks out a master class in handling student pranks, Deadline News>>

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