School for scandal: The Socio-Psychological Institute in the city of Udine, Italy, offering a two-day course on seduction techniques for 300,000 lire (about pounds 100). "We've seen a big change in society and many people have simply lost their courage," said Romina Bellandi, the clinical psychologist who runs the courses. "Our students range from doctors to university students from all over the country, including a few women too."
Ring off: Belly button rings, tongue studs, nose pins and tattoos have been decreed illegal for under-18s in the state of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, without parental approval. Pierced ears and earrings are still allowed. The new law has, however, aroused some opposition. "Why can a 16-year- old vote but can't have a tattoo?" asked Lucio da Silva of the Banzai Tattoo parlour.
Religious art: Roman Catholic church officials in the Netherlands have been ordered to tear down hundreds of posters aimed at promoting religious discussion in schools after a court ruled that the posters breached copyright laws. The poster showed two slits forming a crucifix on a red background, flanked by blue and yellow strips, in a deliberate parody of an abstract expressionist painting by the American artist Barnett Newman, which hangs in a museum in Amsterdam. The poster was captioned: "Who's afraid of God?" The painting was called "Who's afraid of Red, Yellow and Blue III". The church called the poster a harmless joke; the artist's widow called it infringement of copyright.
Penalty disallowed: Mike Cameron, 19, who was suspended from his school in Georgia (see above) last Wednesday for wearing a Pepsi T-shirt at a "Coke in Education Day", had the penalty expunged from his record on Friday. "The penalty didn't fit the crime," the Columbia County Superintendent of Schools said. While his actions were still deemed inappropriate and disruptive, "we have decided that another method of discipline may have been more appropriate".Reuse content