Ad executive admits sexist email 'misses the mark'

LONDON, March 16 (Reuters) - An outgoing advertising executive ranked his female colleagues by attractiveness in an email sent to his entire office, in the latest episode of sexist behavior to rock a British workplace.

In the email, the executive split staff into a "Top Five" and "Bottom Five," commenting on how many pints of beer he would need to have sex with them.

Politicians, lawmakers accused of sexual harassment, assault and misconduct:

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Politicians, lawmakers accused of sexual harassment, assault and misconduct

Several women have come forward accusing President Donald Trump of unwanted touching or kissing. Trump has called the sexual harassment claims 'fake news.'

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Bill Clinton faced numerous allegations of sexual assault and misconduct while he was president of the United States, with accusers including Juanita Broaddrick, who accused him of rape, Kathleen Willey who said he groped her and Paula Jones who said he exposed himself to her without consent.

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Roy Moore faced multiple allegations of sexual misconduct with underaged girls.

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Several women have accused former President George H.W. Bush of groping them during photo ops.

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Sen. Al Franken resigned after he was accused of kissing and groping a woman without her consent during a United Service Organizations (USO) tour in 2006.

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A woman testified that her extra-martial affair with Missouri Governor Eric Greitens was not always consensual. The accuser claimed Greitens took a nude photo of her to use as blackmail and coerced her into having oral sex.

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New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman was accused in May 2018 of physically abusing four women who he had been romantically involved with, according to The New Yorker.

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A former aide of Rep. Bobby Scott, D-Va., says she was fired after she refused his advances.

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Rep. Trent Franks, R-Arizona, resigned after he was accused of asking former female staffers to be surrogate mothers for his child. 

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Rep. Ruben Kihuen, D-Nev., was accused of making unwanted sexual advances to multiple women.

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Rep. Blake Farenthold, R-Texas, was accused of using taxpayer money for a sexual harassment settlement with his former communications director, according to Politico. He announced in December that he wouldn't be seeking reelection. 

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Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) has been accused of unwanted sexual advances by former staffers.

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California Assemblymember Matt Dababneh was accused of masturbating in front of a woman in 2016, according to the Los Angeles Times.

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In 1992 multiple women came forward against Senator Brock Adams accusing him of sexually harassing, molesting or assaulting them.

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The Congressional Office of Compliance reportedly shelled out $100,000 to settle sexual harassment claims against U.S. Rep. Eric Massa, D-New York.

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Congressman Mark Foley, R-Florida, resigned in 2006 amid reports that he sent sexually explicit messages to at least one underage male former page. 

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Rep. Patrick Meehan, R-Pa., called a young former aide his 'soul mate,' but denied sexually harassing her.

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Rep. Dan Johnson, R-Kentucky, was facing sexual assault accusations and reportedly committed suicide.

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Former U.S. Congressman Anthony Weiner was sentenced in 2017 after pleading guilty to one count of sending obscene messages to a minor, ending an investigation into a "sexting" scandal that played a role in the 2016 US presidential election.

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Former U.S. Rep. David Wu, D-Oregon, resigned from his position in 2011 after accusations of an 'unwanted sexual encounter' from the 18-year-old daughter of a donor.

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Former Republican presidential hopeful Herman Cain dropped out of the race in December 2011 amid accusations of sexual misconduct.

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Former U.S. Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert was sentenced to 15 months in prison in 2016 for attempting to skirt banking regulations in order to conceal hush money payments intended to cover up sex abuse allegations stemming from the time he was a high school wrestling coach at a far west suburban Chicago high school decades ago.

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Paul Martin, the departing creative strategist at The&Partnership agency, said he had intended to mock sexism. However, he acknowledged that the email, sent on International Women's Day last week and later published by newspapers such as the Daily Mail and The Times, had "totally missed the mark."

Emboldened by campaigns such as the #MeToo social media movement, many women are expressing anger at years of abusive treatment, pay that lags behind men and workplace cultures that make them feel uncomfortable or threatened.

Women have complained about colleagues' behavior in many North American and British institutions, companies and industries including Hollywood, the media, financial services and in parliament.

The&Partnership said it had apologized to staff and made clear that emails like Martin's are not tolerated.

A spokeswoman said it actively invested in and promoted women at all levels. Its three London agencies are all run by women, its media network in North America is run by two women, and it has female managing directors and heads of department across the business, she said.

Martin said he had intended the email as a way to mock a common tradition in British advertising of sending such messages, but added that it had "understandably offended and upset many people."

"I take full and sole responsibility for this and sincerely apologize for all offense this has caused," he said in a statement. "The email was meant to be a stupid, ironic attempt to subvert and mock the sexist 'Top Five' emails that have been sent around agencies for many years but I have totally missed the mark and take full responsibility."

(Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge; editing by David Stamp)

 

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