In a bid to attract young people to careers in the world of IT, Microsoft Australia has hired former Miss Australia and ex-topless model, Erin McNaught, to front a new advertising campaign. The move comes after a 38% drop in university enrolments in IT courses in Australia during the past two years.
Although McNaught has admitted that she doesn't know that much about computers, she apparently is a keen gamer, hosting the Cyber Shack TV show in Australia.
McNaught attracted controversy last year when topless pictures of her appeared in men’s magazine Zoo Weekly soon after she was named Miss Australia (the pictures had been taken in 2004).
Microsoft kick started its new advertising campaign at the student day of the Australian Information Industry Association's annual technical education conference, where McNaught was a keynote speaker. Apparently students will change their mind about not pursuing a career in IT because they see a pretty model.
While this cynical 1970's approach to marketing is tragic enough, what is really bizarre is that Microsoft has a chosen a university dropout as its poster girl. McNaught dropped out of the Queensland University of Technology, where she was studying science, to pursue a career in modeling.
Microsoft HR has said that they did NOT hire Erin McNaught