We’ve had the man who went for the mask to try and dodge photographers outside court and became a social media sensation after his mask became the story.

Then there was the man who thought the best way to blend in with the crowd was to wrap a copy of the newspaper he was likely to appear in around his head as he left court.

And if we need proof that trying to dodge the cameras only tends to make the story even bigger, here’s perhaps the best case yet.

Step forward Janet Curtis, a benefits cheat:

eastern daily press


Janet, from Clacton, had no problem being filmed water-skiing while claiming benefits she wasn’t entitled to, or indeed posing for a picture when sailing on the QE2 ship (which is where the head and shoulders pic appears to have come from).

But when she was at court, it was a different matter. I’m not even sure what she’s covering her head with. As the picture used by the East Anglian Daily Times on page 3 showed, she certainly stood out on the street outside court with her special head gear:

eadt2Rather like the oddly-masked man in Swansea the other week, Mrs Curtis’s sudden shyness to the camera actually made the story even better, providing the cue for the headline on page one.

In this case, it’s not as though there was a shortage of pictures of Mrs Curtis. The QE2 picture seems to be freely available – I’m guessing part of a bundle of evidence from the Department for Work and Pensions – while there were plenty of CCTV grabs of her water-skiing on holiday too.

Which meant that even without a snatch picture of the hooded Curtis outside court, she was still front page news in the Colchester Gazette too.

colechestergazeeteThe lesson: Trying to hide from the camera only makes things worse. Especially when you’ve not been camera shy before.





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