Chief 'meter maid' accuses Microsoft of telling fibs over promotional stunt

Sydney, Aug 27 (ANI): After Microsoft's tactic to hire "meter maids" to titillate attendees of its TechEd conference on the Gold Coast backfired, the chief meter maid has come forward to accuse the company of telling fibs about the girls' attire.

After a number of the 2700 IT workers attending the conference complained that the presence of scantily clad meter maids objectified women, Microsoft apologised for any offense caused and said it was "unaware of their exact costuming until the day of the event, at which time it was too late to be addressed".

However, in a phone interview chief meter maid, Roberta Aitchison said Microsoft was well aware of the attire and in fact the company's events team had chosen it themselves.

"The garments were chosen specifically by them over a period of 2-3 weeks of them looking at photographs of the girls," the Sydney Morning Herald quoted her as saying.

"They came back to me by email stating which garments they would like the girls to be wearing," she added.

Asked to respond, Microsoft said: "We do stand behind our first statement, however, it's our show, we take full responsibility, and it was the wrong choice."

While some attendees of the conference - including Microsoft's own evangelists and its managing director, Tracey Fellows - said the meter maid stunt was poor form, Aitchison said she could not see what all the fuss was about.

"The girls handle themselves very professionally at these functions and this is the Gold Coast; they [Microsoft] obviously wanted to portray what we're all about which is sun, surf and a great time," she said.

"The meter maids are an icon of Surfer's Paradise and I believe Microsoft knew what they were doing. It would be a very small minority of women I would say that had anything negative to say, because my girls are so polite and attentive towards the females.

"We provided a little bit of glamour to an event that otherwise would've been pretty boring," she added. (ANI)

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