Everyone knows the old classic that everyone on the planet is separated by just six degrees, so, if you want to get in touch with a Patagonian goat-herd, a chain of just half-a-dozen people will bring you face-to-face with your target.
Another time-honoured adage is that when you sleep with someone, you are sleeping with everyone they ever slept with, and everyone those people slept with, and so forth. Accordingly, you may be pleasantly surprised to discover that you have in fact slept with Sharon Stone, even if you weren't aware of the fact.
Now a website is seeking to build the world's biggest database of previous sexual partners - a so-called "Sex Degrees of Separation" resource - aiming to, well, we're not quite sure what the point of it is, but here's the blurb:
Shagster.net* - located at www.shagster.net - aims to go one stage further than the current craze of online social groups such as Friendster and Myspace which simply list friends of friends of friends. Shagster.net allows members to finally discover a new circle of mates through mating.
Naturally, there are built-in safeguards to protect the privacy of those who do not wish it to be publicly known that they once enjoyed a one-night stand with a bloke from Birmingham after a particularly drunken computer show beano:
Users simply register their profile for free before inputting the details of those they have slept with. These details are only added with the consent of the other party, but, once given, a new circle of friends is generated. Stats such as 'performance ratings' are also listed, adding a little bit more spice to the community. Members can browse the profiles of friends they are connected to, to discover who they in turn are connected to, forming new friendships through their mutual conquests.
The consent bit of it does actually sort of scupper the basic premise of Shagster.net. Still, we're sure that the pseudo-sociological element will make the whole thing a great success, as site founder Chris Leate explains: "This site aims to explore the various worldwide links between individuals via sexual partners. It'll provide an interesting snapshot of the sexual make-up of our users - one which will, I am sure, provoke debate as the community evolves."
Hmmm. Shagster.net is currently in beta. The operators say it is free now and will remain so after it goes full-fat in the coming months. In the meantime, if you get an email saying: "Sharon69@shagster.net claims you once gave her one in the toilets at Computex and would like to advertise the fact to everyone on the planet", you now know that it is not an attempt to extract money with menaces, but rather said Sharon simply trying to get an interesting snapshot of her sexual make-up. ®
*Surely Shagsreunited is a better moniker for this invaluable online resource?