British Mothers' Web Forum Criticized For Raunchy Sex Talk
The editors of British internet forum Mumsnet were forced to censor dozens of raunchy messages that had more to do with bedroom antics than voting tactics, The Sunday Times of London reported.
Friday nights became the regular time for risque talk on the forum, with practical advice on sex more in keeping with the Kama Sutra.
This weekend, one member asked for links to naked pictures of Keanu Reeves while another complained that â€œthere isnâ€™t nearly enough nudity and free love."
Some of the siteâ€™s 850,000 users were so shocked by the uninhibited exchanges that they threatened to quit in protest.
Mumsnet staff launched a frantic cleanup, deleting some of the most explicit material, but were unable to stop members from starting new x-rated discussions.
Political commentators predicted that the average â€œMumsnetterâ€ could play as important a role in deciding the forthcoming general election as Worcester Woman - symbolic of potential swing voters for whom quality of life issues are high priorities - did for Tony Blair in 1997.
Deborah Mattinson, Brownâ€™s pollster, described Mumsnet as â€œtotemic of the modern mothers who will be the key political battleground at the next election."
However, amid the debate over who should govern Britain, a more naughty line of conversation was gripping the site, with mothers swapping tips on sexual techniques and talking about hang-ups.
Discussion forums popped up on everything from sexual positions to male impotence. One regular member started a thread about men who make pirate noises while making love. She said of her lover, â€œRecently he has begun to put on a strange voice during sex, eg â€˜Arr mateyâ€™ in the style of that weird sea captain from The Simpsons.â€
An attempt in another thread to discuss a particular sexual practice received the response, â€œOh dear, this is a bit, um, frank! Probably best get a book! Best advice: make sure everything is nice and clean.â€
Mumsnet claimed many of the postings were tongue-in-cheek and meant to be humorous. But critics said the banter threatened to tarnish the siteâ€™s wholesome image and could embarrass its founders.
This is the first U.K. election when the leaders of the three main parties all have young children. Prime Minister Godron Brown, Conservative leader David Cameron and Nick Clegg, head of the Liberal Democrats, were all quizzed on Mumsnet, and the Labour Party placed advertisements on the site attacking the Tories over child tax credits.
â€œPoliticians love talking to Mumsnet. I feel it is a bit like a job interview - which I guess in many ways it is,â€ said David Willetts, the Conservative Party spokesman for universities and skills, who appeared on the site in January.