A beautiful hack

Here at Digitaledge, we don't condone hacking. Let's be very clear about that. Having said that, we defy you to hear about this particular hack and not cheer.

You've probably heard of Beautiful People, the publicity-hungry social network. To differentiate itself from the pack of dating-slash-networking sites out there, it has a simple stipulation: only the beautiful need apply. New members have to have their profile picture approved by other members before they can join. It's like a shallower version of the membership system for swanky Gentlemen's Clubs.

We're not sure we like Beautiful People's approach - wouldn't 'nice people' be a better concept? - and it seems we're not the only ones. It's emerged the site was recently hacked to allow less good-looking people to join.

The Guardian reports that a virus was planted, probably by an ex-employee, that messed up the system that blocks less attractive people. 'We got suspicious when tens of thousands of new members were accepted over a six-week period, many of whom were no oil painting,' boss Greg Hodge said.

Once the virus was discovered, the site wasted no time in booting most of the new members off. They've even refunded their membership fees. 'We have to stick to our founding principles of only accepting beautiful people – that's what our members have paid for,' says Hodge. 'We can't just sweep 30,000 ugly people under the carpet.'

Hmm. What do you think, readers - is Beautiful People right to maintain its strict standards? Or is letting people think they're pretty, only to tell them a few weeks later they're not, a bit mean?

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