Uruti finishes third to soft-core porn video

JO MOIR
Last updated 05:00 30/04/2011

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Uruti School's hope of winning a $10,000 prize in a Hitachi competition have been shattered by a soft-core porn ukulele video, even though organisers have rejected 200,000 of its votes.

The Taranaki primary school, with eight pupils, finished third overall in the competition, which was won by an Auckland entry which went "viral" and appeared on an adult website.

The competition involved attracting people to watch a YouTube video of entrants playing the ukulele and singing the Hitachi song and ran for a month to 10pm yesterday.

But Uruti cried foul after the Auckland entry, featuring a woman displaying her cleavage throughout the video, shot to the lead by collecting thousands of votes a day, many from people logging onto adult sites.

Yesterday a woman calling herself Sarah Helen emailed the Taranaki Daily News to accuse Uruti of bad sportsmanship.

Spokesperson Teone Belton-Bodsworth said they were an Auckland based group and the model playing the ukelele in the video was Ms Helen.

Ms Helen said: "I would have expected better from the people at Uruti School who should be teaching their eight students good sportsmanship, not hate."

Mr Belton-Bodsworth said Uruti School had turned the competition into a campaign against the leading entry rather than focusing on gathering their own votes.

Hitachi had contacted him following complaints from other entrants to say 200,000 votes had been removed from their total because they were either from overseas websites or websites deemed inappropriate or unacceptable.

Ms Helen attributed her success to the video being enjoyed and shared by so many people to the point of going viral.

"This differs from the other competitors who are having to ask people to view it and share it," she said.

On Thursday Hitachi sales and marketing manager Todd Parkin said he was aware of complaints and as a result all entrants had been asked to declare statistics detailing what sites their votes came from.

Ms Helen said she had no control over what websites her video link has been embedded in. "I have no control over the `as seen on sexyandfunny.com' button and have already asked YouTube if I can get it removed as I did not ask `sexyandfunny.com' to embed my video and I would rather they didn't."

Uruti is still expected to be a winner. The third placegetter is expected to get a monetary prize. Uruti's entry involved all eight pupils, two sheep, a pet calf and a farm dog called Trop.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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