Infidelity Advocates Ashley Madison Uses Mark Sanford on Billboard Ad

Hook up site AshleyMadison.com is again courting controversy after debuting a new billboard campaign south of Columbia, South Carolina, that uses a photo of ex Governor Mark Sanford to sell its tryst-arranging services.

The ad appears on Interstate 26, 25 miles below South Carolina’s state capital, Columbia, and takes up two, stacked billboards. The top billboard reads “Next time use…” next to a photo of Gov. Sanford. The one below reads “AshleyMadison.com to find your ‘running mate.’” The lower billboard also features the website’s slogan, “Life is short. Have an affair.”

The site’s CEO, Noel Biderman, claims that he hopes his billboards will lead to more acceptance for adultery and cheating and lead to less criticism for those who indulge such behavior.

“We are trying to get people to distinguish between capability, and what goes on in the bedroom,” Biderman said. “There are few voices speaking on behalf of those who are unfaithful. Once we found out [Sanford] was back in business, that’s the story we want to attach ourselves to. We believe careers shouldn’t be lost because you choose not to sustain monogamy.”

Sanford drew criticism in 2009 for an extramarital affair that eventually drove him from the Governor’s office. Now, Ex-Governor Sanford is now running for Congress in South Carolina. His campaign has not released a statement on the billboards.

There is no word if AshleyMadison.com ever considered using Democrat Anthony Weiner in ads in New York since the married Democrat has a reputation for sending nude photos of himself to young female admirers, or Democrat Governor Eliot Spitzer who became infamous as “Client No. 9” when he was swept up in a prostitution scandal in New York—Spitzer was also driven from office over the scandal.

Since its 2001 launch the Canadian-based website has been controversial for marketing its services to people already in marriages or committed relationships. Biderman has said he wants his site’s name brand to become “the Kleenex of cheating.”

This isn’t the first time that AshleyMadison.com used a famous person’s image without asking prior notice. In 2012 the site was sued by the Queen of Spain for using her image in advertisements without permission. Eventually the website apologized for using the queen’s image.

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  • JWH

    Democrat Governor Eliot Spitzer who became infamous as “Client No. 9” when he was swept up in a prostitution scandal in New York

    Ashley Madison did write an “open letter” to Spitzer in a full-page ad in the New York Post. Don’t know about Weiner, though.

  • GarandFan

    Surprised they didn’t use Kevin Newsome, Lt Gov of Kalifornia. He was screwing his best friend’s wife.

    • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

      Gavin

  • herddog505

    This is one of the funniest billboards I’ve seen in a long time!

  • Commander_Chico

    I’m glad Sanford won his race, it’s good when guys get a second chance.

  • Conservachef

    “There are few voices speaking on behalf of those who are unfaithful.

    Well, duh. That’s because being unfaithful is still considered a bad thing.

    • herddog505

      On behalf of Bill Clinton, I take exception to that!

      I also muse that Jenny Sanford, if she had any interest in politics, really screwed herself: if only she’s laid down like a doormat and taken Mark’s philandering, who knows what might have been? Senator from New York? Secretary of State? PRESIDENT?

      • Conservachef

        Yeah I almost went back and added “in certain circles” to the end of my last sentence. It’s considered a bad thing in certain circles (IE everywhere except progressive circles).

        WRT Jenny, I’m not sure- there would have to be some reference to a vast left-wing conspiracy or something.. Isn’t that what Hillary claimed back in the day?

  • http://wizbangblog.com/author/rodney-graves/ Rodney G. Graves

    From Twitter:

    Meghan McCain ‏@MeghanMcCain 11h
    Really republicans? We’re gonna get behind Mark Sanford and claim gay couples will ruin marriage. This is why young people don’t vote GOP!!!

    McCain also replied to Burge’s (better known as IowaHawk) post, saying how can the GOP vote for a philanderer.

    To which, he responded:

    David Burge
    ‏@iowahawkblog
    @MeghanMcCain if it wasn’t for politicians cheating on their wives, you wouldn’t exist.

    McCain was pissed…to which with he responded:

    David Burge ‏@iowahawkblog 2h
    “I expected better of you, Dave.” You expected wrong.

  • Par4Course

    While politicians are generally “fair game,” it should be illegal to use anyone’s image for commercial purposes without their consent. There are plenty of pols in both parties that could be used like Sanford. (I recall the famous VW ad spoof that National Lampoon ran with the picture of a floating Bug and the slogan “If Teddy Kennedy drove a Volkswagen, he’d be President today.”)

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