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November 29, 2012

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Site removes job ad favoring gays

A LEADING headhunting website yesterday removed a recruitment ad that favors gay applicants after the criteria made a stir on the Internet.

But soon after the ad was removed, the advertiser angrily accused the website of discriminating against homosexuals and demanded it issue an open apology for deleting the ad without discussing it with them.

Though the company offering the job won some support among netizens, some of them wondered whether the company was only promoting itself by using a controversial topic.

The incident started when an Internet user wrote yesterday that she was shocked to see a company offering high salaries to recruit gays on the headhunting website,

According to a screenshot picture she uploaded online, the company wrote in the ad in both Chinese and English that applicants for a job position as public relations manger should be "male, aged 25 to 30," while being "homosexual is the first priority."

"I was so upset by the company. The gays are taking boyfriends away from us, and now they are even taking our jobs!" the woman wrote.

Her microblog was forwarded about 1,100 times by yesterday evening, sparking heated discussion.

But the controversial criterion was quickly deleted from the headhunting website, and several hours later, the job recruitment ad disappeared.

"We are very angry that the website has deleted the ad without talking with us," said Jiao Quan, public relations director for the company, which runs the e-commerce website for luxury goods.

Jiao said that they prefer gays for the job because gays are usually popular in fashion circles. Jiao said gays seem more sensitive to fashion and many have shown talent in the luxury industry.

"We have received about 60 resumes a day since we posted the ad on Monday," Jiao said. The company said it offered a salary for the job up to 500,000 yuan (US$80,250) per year.

He said the company was asking the website to issue an open apology as "there shouldn't be any discrimination against gays or lesbians." The company now plans to continue its recruitment by posting the ad on other headhunting websites, he said.

As of late yesterday, the headhunting website had not commented on the case.


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