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March 7, 2011

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Students charged too much for shower

A LOCAL university has fixed a bug in its shower charging system after it was dubbed the "Luxury Bath House" for overcharging hundreds of students.

Many students at Donghua University complained online that they were paying too much when the new system was introduced on February 21. Users were given a card which they charged up with money and then used a swipe system to get hot water.

But students complained on social network sites that they were being charged 10 yuan (US$1.52) for taking a shower only lasting several minutes.

Hundreds of other students then claimed they had the same experience.

Some students carefully studied the bill system and found that they were charged 0.04 yuan for every two seconds - 1.2 yuan per minute.

Rather than getting angry, many students sought to satirize their university, uploading jokey comments.

"The principal had a dream that one day he could make money by opening a bath house, and now the dream has come true," said one student.

"Still showing off your wealth by carrying Louis Vuitton bags or driving Lamborghini? That's so yesterday. Come to Donghua Luxury Bath House instead," said another student.

Following this theme, some students redesigned their university badge into a "Luxury Donghua Bath House" crest, complete with the motto, "Time is money."

An official with Donghua University, surnamed Qiu, told Shanghai Daily that they had fixed the system bug once they learned about it.

Qiu said the university had returned overcharged fees to the students and apologized.

According to Qiu, bathroom facilities had been free until they were updated.

The price should be 0.04 yuan for every 1 liter of water consumed, not for every two seconds, said an engineer of the university.


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