CanWest reports that Gordon Lightfoot dies, Twitter gets blamed

2 posts / 0 new
Last post
kim elliott kim elliott's picture
CanWest reports that Gordon Lightfoot dies, Twitter gets blamed

So, anyone follow the story yesterday of Gordon Lightfoot's death and resurrection?

I found a great blog posting this morning outlining what happened:

"While driving back from a trip to the dentist on Thursday, Canadian folk singer Gordon Lightfoot was somewhat surprised to learn that he was deceased — at least, according to the radio station he was listening to. Thousands of other people discovered his death via Twitter, which exploded with reports of his demise and was soon filled with tributes to him, touching memories of where people were when they heard his classic songs, and so on. And thus, Lightfoot joined a select (but growing) group of celebrities who have been reported dead via Twitter — a list that includes Jeff Goldblum, Maya Angelou, Patrick Swayze (who did pass away soon afterwards), Zach Braff, Johnny Depp and Kanye West.

Once it became known that Lightfoot had not in fact gone to his eternal reward, plenty of people spent the next several hours doing another thing that people love to do on Twitter: blame Twitter for spreading a fake news report. But as Peter Kafka correctly points out, Twitter didn’t kill Gordon Lightfoot — traditional media did. It appeared to start with a prank phone call (remember the telephone?) to the management company representing Lightfoot’s close friend and fellow musical legend Ronnie Hawkins, from someone pretending to be Lightfoot’s grandson.

Hawkins then started calling people to let them know, who in turn alerted Canwest News Service, which called Hawkins to confirm the news and then published a brief news item that got picked up by a number of the chain’s newspapers. That report was then spread by reporters on Twitter, including Canwest political reporter David Akin, who later wrote a blog post about the role he played in the story."

Read the full blog here at GIGAOM


Hilarious. :)