UniLad Magazine Forced To Pull 'Surprise' Rape Article After Twitter Backlash

First Posted: 31/01/2012 17:03 GMT Updated: 04/12/2012 10:55 GMT

UPDATE: UniLad creator Jamie Street faces disciplinary action from his university.

An online magazine aimed at university students pulled a controversial and derogatory article about rape victims after a huge Twitter backlash.

The National Union of Students (NUS) has called for the website UniLad, which claims to be the "number one university student lad's magazine and guide to getting laid" to be pulled down over the article.

In an article titled "Sexual Mathematics" it stated:

"If the girl you've taken for a drink... won't 'spread for your head', think about this mathematical statistic: 85% of rape cases go unreported.

"That seems to be fairly good odds."

The writer then adds at the bottom of the piece: "Uni Lad does not condone rape without saying 'surprise'."

The article has now been deleted from the site, which appears to be based in the UK, and an apology has been posted on Twitter. Despite taking it down, the post has continued to provoke outrage online.

One Twitter user, Sarah McAlpine (@sazza_jay) questioned the magazine over the comments, only to find she was asked "Are you a dyke?" by the publication's Twitter feed.

McAlpine replied: "Obviously you know you did wrong or you wouldn't have amended the article. You are not saving face by harrassing me."

Uni Lad then continued: "We know we did wrong and it has been removed. That wasn't harassment, it was a question.

McAlpine, a recent graduate from Kent University, said she found the site "almost laughable".

"It's a 101 for misogyny. It seems to be run by a group of infantile boys caught up in a relentless willy waving contest, measured by how horrible you are to women."

The 22-year-old, who was co-founder of the Feminist Society at Kent, said she did feel there is a "culture of misogyny on university campuses".

Far from being a harmless student blog, UniLad is a money-generating website, complete with merchandise. The site has nearly 70,000 "likes" on Facebook and more than 2,000 followers on Twitter and claims to have an average daily visit count of 8,000.

The website, which says it was founded by "Alex Partridge", has six other writers, including one "top wench".

Lorna Naylor, is the only female writer for the site and she wrote articles such as the one pictured above, titled "The Problem With Slags".

She tweeted one writer for PR company esPResso saying: "nothing i have written has been controversial".

Another writer, Jack-William Cantwell, emailed Huffington Post UK saying he had been "inactive with the company for around five months".

National Women's Officer for the NUS Estelle Hart has called for the entire website to be shut down for its "misogyny".

"Words cannot describe my anger at seeing this website. These pathetic attempts at humour feed into a view in society that women are to blame for the violence committed against them.

"The casual trivialisation of rape suggests it is something other than a despicable violent crime and whilst I'm reluctant to give this website the oxygen of publicity we cannot let them get away with such degrading attitudes towards women.

"Removing one vile comment from the site barely scratches the surface of its misogyny. The whole site should be taken down until they have radically over-hauled their editorial policy.

"This article does not stand alone; there are countless others with similar misogynistic and degrading statements and 'tips' about women."

"Jake Gallagher", (@ChefJake_) is one of the more prolific writers on the site. His articles include "How to pull a fresher" which begins: "Fresher girls are especially vulnerable".

One of Gallagher's "tips" is: "NEVER BUY HER A DRINK. That’s the 3rd tip. Buying a girl a drink is so clichéd and immediately you lay down your cards." He rounds off by saying: "Stick it to her! BOSH".

Another piece recounts one of his experiences with a girl. "She was loving it, the slag," he writes. "Now I was in charge of the little slag.

"My walk of shame was now a walk of pride."

Another post, this time by "Jamie" describes women as "hoards of sluts teetering around in mini-skirts and stilettos" and a "medley of minge".

The NUS's Estelle Hart added: "Referring to women as wenches and slags can't be laughed off as 'banter' when just this week the head of the CPS in London has said that jurors preconceptions about women has a negative impact on rape conviction rates.

"The rape conviction rate in the UK is, at 6%, one of the lowest in Europe and that’s with less than 20% of rapes ever reported to the police.

"Violence against women is a serious and current issue on university campuses and it is intensely irresponsible to target their violent misogynistic attitudes at students.

"NUS’ Hidden Marks report revealed that one in seven women students have been the victim of a serious physical or sexual assault and the website's writers should think about that before joking about rape again."

McAlpine added she had been "blown away" by the amount of support she had received via Twitter.

FOLLOW HUFFPOST UK UNIVERSITIES & EDUCATION