'Message had been sent around for years'

Veritas suspends members over WhatsApp scandal

Photo: DUB

In an e-mail sent to its 1,700 members, Veritas' board once again distanced itself from the WhatsApp messages exposed on social media by Tim Hofman, from the popular Dutch YouTube channel Boos (which means "angry"). President Sophie Pizzuto declared that the texts are "pathetic, sad, and disrespectful", not to mention against the frsternity's code of conduct.

The association has started internal legal proceedings, Pizzuto writes. The members involved will be suspended until the fraternity defines what the punishment will be. They are not allowed to enter the association's building or participate in its activities.

The president says the incident shows the importance of the fraternity's campaign against sexual harassment, carried out two years ago. At the same time, she acknowledges that more needs to be done. “This is a painful sign but it’s a clear one. Not all members understand the impact of texts like that.”

The e-mail sent to all members includes an apology from Fubar, a group which represents several year clubs. According to them, the message had been going around for years. Year club Bandolero was asked to send it again to a different year club, as an invitation to a meeting. The members of that year club were called stomabeffer, which roughly translates to "colostomy bag licker", and were asked to share "the phone numbers of the three horniest whores in your year."

Fubar says sending the text “without changes in the content” was “a big mistake, for which we want to, and will, take responsibility.” Year club Bandolero seconds the apology, and also calls the words “unacceptable”.

Apparently, this is not the first reprimand for Fubar. In the e-mail, the group states it is “aware that it’s presented itself in an unacceptable way these past few years”. The group claims to intend to use the incident to implement a change process “with urgency”.