Mecca Sex Shop Turns Out to be Hoax

Here at Daze Reader, we love a good hoax and a good hoax debunking. Mecca sex shop report fools media.

Last week a bunch of news sites ran a story about a Moroccan entrepreneur supposedly planning to open a sex shop in the holy city of Mecca. Abdelaziz Aouragh owns El Asira, an Amsterdam-based online halal sex shop aimed at Muslims, which is backed by German sex shop chain Beate Uhse.

However, it turns out that the Mecca story was totally bogus. A Moroccan news site launched the hoax with a story quoting a year-old interview with Aouragh, under the headline “Moroccan intends to open a Halal sex shop in Mecca”. According to this debunking, “The story’s headline, however, proved to be fallacious, as Aouragh merely said he was willing to open a sex shop in the holy Saudi Arabian city and never actually was given the authority to do so.” That didn’t stop dozens of news outlets from running with the story.

This is a prime example of the story that’s just too good to fact-check phenomenon.

Mecca already has lingerie shops from the Nayomi chain, which is sort of like Fredericks of Saudi Arabia. Many of the “sex shop coming to Mecca” news items used stock photographs of Saudi women wearing abayas shopping at Nayomi outlets.