• Sweden's news in English

Pornstar cap 'no attire for nursery worker'

TT/Christine Demsteader · 23 Jan 2010, 10:25

Published: 23 Jan 2010 10:25 GMT+01:00

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Mats Mügge was working on a temporary basis with Frilufts Förskolor in Täby, near Stockholm, and had been offered a further month's work at the end of last year.

Just before Christmas the nursery's HR manager told him they had changed their mind and did not want to renew his contract.

Parents with children attending the nursery had spotted a photo of him wearing a cap branded with the words 'Pornstar' and had complained.

"I had the hat on in the picture and you can see part of my arm where I have a tattoo," Mügge told newspaper Svenska Dagbladet.

"She said the photo wasn't suitable for someone working in a pre-school and they didn’t want me to work there anymore."

Mügge believes the manager made unjust insinuations, accusing him of being a paedophile.

He has now reported the nursery to the Equality Ombudsman, DO (Diskrimineringsombudsmannen).

"She didn’t say it outright," he added. "But if you read between the lines you could understand what she meant."

The nursery's owner Peter Wallebo rejects the suggestion that management had any serious concerns about his former employee’s sexual disposition.

"We would never accuse Mats of anything like that," he said. "We judged our decision solely on the fact that wearing a cap like that just isn’t suitable when working within childcare."

Wallebo adds that he had no complaints about Mügge’s work performance. Challenged as to why the nursery simply didn’t ask him to remove the photo from the website, Wallebo said it was already too late.

Story continues below…

"The damage had been done because parents had seen it," he said. "It was a shame he put it up there in the first place."


TT/Christine Demsteader (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

11:06 January 23, 2010 by calebian22
Privacy settings would have kept the busybody parents from seeing the photo. Dumb move on his part.
11:10 January 23, 2010 by byke
while I do not agree with the worker on his case, I am curious if the Swedish language law which doesn't recognize English as an official or minority language.

Had this been a controversial word in another language that a vast majority didn't recognize, this wouldn't have been an issue.

I wonder if this worker can now slip through the cracks on a legal technicality?
12:19 January 23, 2010 by Michael84
Lesson: don't wear a porn star emblazoned cap! and if you did, don't take a photo! and if you did that at least don't put on your facebook
12:39 January 23, 2010 by Rick Methven
"Lesson: don't wear a porn star emblazoned cap! and if you did, don't take a photo! and if you did that at least don't put on your facebook "

Better still dont use facebook, twitter etc etc.
13:18 January 23, 2010 by Pojken
For real? It's a cap. It's a word. It's a cap with words. People are so uptight. WORSE is, he didn't even wear it to work. It was merely a picture of him wearing it on some other occasion. What the hell?

If people would have seen some of my clothes and costumes from parties past...
22:27 January 23, 2010 by EtoileBrilliant
What's the big deal. Pornstar has been a designer brand for at least 15 years. Their baseball caps are much sought after. I've seen worse things on Mambo baseball hats-
03:34 January 24, 2010 by Davey-jo
Oh come on; you liberals cannot defend this bag of garbage.

You have "Pornstar" as "designer brand" for 15 years? Where have I been? This is news to me; how is this possible? No, I'm not a hermit, but I've never heard of Pornstar before today.

I cannot imagine anyone with a brain cell that works would want to wear such a "designer brand". It's stupid and crass and beyond belief.

Pornstar; so what? Someone who copulates for somebody else's fun? Is that it? A kind of Tiberian entertainer? Something lower than a tur%
08:23 January 24, 2010 by EtoileBrilliant
Link from Ebay for Mens Clothes (designer not fancy dress)


Obviously a case of "lost in translation"
09:26 January 24, 2010 by fiona algar
Yes, possibly a silly thing to do and perhaps deserving of a warning but I always thought the Swedes were liberal people. It's a lesson for many to learn from re: privacy settings and the Internet and heaven forbid if someone should wear either a "gold digger" or "bunny girl" top in their private life - presumably they'll be seen as just that!!! (yes, other labels desired by young people, for anyone who doesn't know!)
10:04 January 24, 2010 by byke
I am still interested to know if he wore this hat during work, or if it was a case of the picture being taken before his employment or after hours while not at work?
11:09 January 24, 2010 by hilt_m
this is just dumb, it's a brand name not the job he's doing! This should be a case taken to court for unfair dismissal.
12:22 January 24, 2010 by Kronaboy
I wish somebody would do something about the drunken trainee teachers and doctors jumping stark bollock naked off the pier at the bottom of our road. byke, nice try son but English is an EU language.
14:06 January 24, 2010 by xenyasai
It is worth knowing that depending on where you work they can actually have a say how you behave outside of work. If your behaviour during your own free time can have a negative effect on your employer they can actually do something about it.

10 years ago you would probably get away with it as most people were still a bit unwilling to share their whole life for the world, but now we willingly share everything we do almost 24/7 and it is very easily accessible through the Internet.

To put it simple. This is a company that has an employ doing something they do not want to be associated with; and to show their customers they are still a respectable company they fire this person. Maybe a bit harsh, but that is life.

It has also been many articles the last years about people losing their jobs because their employer found something online they disagreed on. Take precautions. Is it really that important that the whole world sees your wearing a certain type of clothing?
11:13 January 25, 2010 by byke
@ Kronaboy

Actually you are wrong, there is no official EU language. However English is the most common bond language spoken in the member states. But if you read the swedish language laws that came into power in 2009 you will also see what language sweden officially (NOT English).
12:43 January 25, 2010 by entry
There have been only a few lectures that I have subjected the teenager in our home. One was regarding copyrights, unlawful downloading and the lack of privacy of online blogs & profiles.

In short, the Internet has a long memory. Anything and everything you post online can affect your potential in the work market and your private life.

Consider everything you post online as you would a tattoo on the center of your forehead.
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