Reports are saying that Michael Jackson has died of a heart attack. Others say he is just in ER. The Twittersphere has exploded with rumour and suggestion following a report from celebrity site TMZ.
If Michael Jackson’s death has been misreported, it will be one of the biggest Internet hoaxes of all time, if it is confirmed as true, TMZ will have outstripped every single news organisation in the world and will act as a demonstration of the changing of the media guard.
Whatever the case, it is amazing to see how quickly the story has spread and it is also interesting to wonder how it will be reported in the music press, the majority of whom are at Glastonbury.
Regular reporters will be called upon to quickly knock together copy instead of more experienced hacks and obits will be hastily created.
23:25 Update: Twitter Search has an 18 minute delay on processing tweets, presumably caused by the sheer volume of content it’s dealing with. (approximately 9000 per minute)
23:51 Update: BBC News confirmed Michael Jackson’s death, it must be true – even though TMZ reported it first – new media has come of age.