Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/02/14/domainer_illness/

Techies floored by 'virus' after Playboy mansion party

Domainers meet Playmates, call for Doctors and Nurses

By Joe Fay

Posted in Bootnotes, 14th February 2011 13:37 GMT

LA Public Health Officials are investigating The Playboy Mansion after 100 techies became horribly ill in the wake of a party there.

According to local reports, Hef's mansion was the venue for a fundraiser and end-of-show party for the DomainFest conference earlier this month. The show itself was at the Fairmont Miramar Hotel in Santa Monica.

Anyone thinking that domain nerds paying over-the-odds for get-a-peek at the Playboy mansion and its superbly enhanced inmates deserve what they get should think again. The event was a fundraiser for autism charities including Jenny McCarthy's Generation Rescue Foundation, making it a perfectly legitimate way to round off three days of domain name seminars. And arguably tax-deductable too.

As well as the chance to discuss autism with Jenny McCarthy, and fellow Playmates Jennifer Walcott and Suzanne Stokes, attendees were also promised "gourmet food, beautiful lingerie models, great dance music, gogo dancers, tours of the grounds including the famous grotto, and plenty of fun photo opportunities".

Sadly, things went from grotto to grotty in the ensuing days, with attendees taking to twitter and their blogs to complain of headaches, nausea and violent headaches. Four Swedish attendees were reportedly diagnosed with Pontiac fever, a mild form of Legionnaires disease.

The "cluster" of symptoms among the distressed domainers has prompted the LA County Department of Public Health to investigate, and on Friday it emailed all the attendees of the conference asking them about any symptoms they may have come down with.

While the Playboy connection has garnered most attention, the Fairmont Hotel is also being looked over.

The Playboy organisation denied that "anyone caught anything at the Playboy mansion" telling the New York Post that "We have been contacted by the Health Department and the Playboy Mansion is cooperating fully with the investigation". ®