Is story of "cheated wife" on giant billboard a hoax or heartbreak?

Hoax or heartbreak?

By Bonnie Malkin


The Telegraph

It's a heartwarming story: cheated wife gets the perfect revenge by naming and shaming her unfaithful husband and his mistress on a giant billboard in their home town.

She wins the support of her local radio station, her story is followed up in newspapers across the world and she becomes an inspiration to the betrayed, vulnerable and heartbroken.

The billboard appeared in December. But is it a huge, elaborate hoax?

But is it true, or is the story of Jane's revenge a hoax?

Hundreds of people across the world have followed the story of Jane Doe, the devoted wife who unearthed her husband's affair and sought to get her own back.

The saga began in September, when "Jane" contacted a Birmingham radio station by email, asking for advice. Over several weeks her emails detailed the discovery of new aftershave, a jewellery receipt, and finally, confirmation of the affair.

Then, in December a large yellow billboard ad, worth about 1750, appeared beside a Birmingham road reading: "To my 'dear husband Mark' and my 'best friend' Shelly, You are the most despicable, deceitful people I have ever met.

"I know what you did and I'm d isgusted.

"I've changed the locks Mark, burnt your clothes and emptied OUR joint account - to pay for this poster. You deserve each other."

The sign directed readers to the website'srevenge where Jane fleshed out her story in full, telling visitors "They say revenge is sweet, it doesn't feel sweet, it feels great to no longer be the little paranoid woman at home, and finally be able to take control of my own life again..."

The story was an instant hit, appearing in the national media, then in papers as far away as New Zealand, India and Dubai.

Sympathisers flocked to her website disclosing their own tales of deception and loss.

"I really hope Mark realises what an amazing women he has lost," wrote one. "You're so strong. He has lost something very precious and I hope he is very ashamed with the hurt he has put you and your family in."

Another said: "Just wanted to say you're an inspiration and a tower of strength."

And another: "What a marvellous, brave woman you are. I wish I had had a joint account to empty when my partner screwed me around, but you got one back for all of us!"

The owners of the billboard, Titan Outdoor, said they had had an enquiry about a placing a similar ad, but the caller had baulked at the cost.

But then the rumours started. Bloggers such as Stuart Bruce and Simon Bisson drew parallels between Jane's posters and similar ones used recently in America to promote a television program. Even the wording of the ads was similar.

But Brmb, the radio station that has supported Jane's campaign and gets a couple of plugs on her website, pleads ignorance.

Phil Barton-Ancliffe, the station's marketing controller, said: "as far as we're concerned the information we received was completely genuine."

Mr Barton said the station had used the American billboards as "inspiration" for Jane's ad, but there is no way to confirm this because the only person who is in direct contact with Jane, breakfast show host Caroline Martin, was currently on holiday.

This wouldn't the first time BRMB has pulled a publicity stunt on such a grand scale.

In 1999 the station married two complete strangers live on air - another stunt that ended in divorce.
I think not
Hell has no fury like a woman scorned.
Hell is hot enough for men/women who cheat on their spouses.

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