A student magazine has faced backlash after publishing a practical guide to shoplifting to help readers overcome the cost of living.
University of Queensland Independent Student Journal Semper Floreat gave readers of his latest edition a three-level manual on what he called “frifting”, a shortening of “free shopping”.
The article encouraged students, whom it equated with “working class,” to take “from big business not ‘ma and pa’ joints” and only “what you need.”
Readers were told they could help others by turning a blind eye if they saw someone ‘cheating’.
The anonymous author has divided the guide into three parts – “groceries”, “clothing chains” and “choose your character”, with three rules applying throughout.
“Consider establishing a ‘safety radius’. Don’t frift near your home”, “be sure to frift during peak hours and on the busiest days of the week” and “park (if driving) away from the building and take CCTV into account” .
Those planning to target a grocery store should wear a face mask and cover identifiable body marks like tattoos, according to the article.
Students were encouraged to buy “two of each item” from clothing stores and wear the clothes they intended to “steal” out of the store.
They must also select a “character” before leaving, choosing from options such as “confused, stressed, awkward nerd: dress like a computer scientist, take a phone call”, and “flirtatious, sexy and slow to understand: pretend not to understand each other -service”.
At the bottom of the article, readers were told: “Semper Floreat does not condone illegal activity, but recognizes that breaking the law is sometimes a human right”.
The publication claimed to have preemptively prepared a response in anticipation of being asked to comment on its “frying” post.
“People are struggling to make ends meet. Students are incurring tens of thousands of dollars in debt and many are living in poverty as a result,” reads part of his statement.
“It’s a class war and the working class is under attack. We have no choice but to stand up and fight back.
He also conducted a poll in a University of Queensland Facebook group asking members if they thought the article was ‘cool’ or ‘uncool’, to which 54% said ‘cool’ and 25% said no. “not cool”.
The article was criticized by Queensland Education Minister Grace Grace, who said New that Semper Floreat “should withdraw” the article, while shadow education minister Christian Rowan said it was irresponsible to encourage criminal activity.
“We simply cannot have a situation where people are encouraged to commit criminal offenses or else we end up in a situation of anarchy,” he said. New.
Brisbane Greens Councilor Jonathan Sriranganathan, however, said there were instances where the theft was “ethically justifiable”.