It’s not like social media causes celebrity deaths, exactly — but it does seem like famous people are dying faster and more frequently since Twitter, like, happened. I mean, how many times has Bill Cosby been died? A lot. And it’s more likely now than ever that an obituary gets published just a little too early, as in the case with gossip columnist Liz Smith jumping the gun on Nora Ephron’s demise from cancer.
But like some kind of celebrity death Snopes, Death Rumors has arrived to help combat — or confirm — deadly rumors.
SInbad in 2011: still alive.
It’s not exactly a fail-proof method, though: Death Rumors simply declares whether a death is confirmed or not by more official sources, aggregates tweets about a celebrity’s purported doom and provides a Bing search widget to give up-to-the-minute news.
Still, it’s helpful to have one-stop-shopping for widespread, unconfirmed death reports. As I type this, someone is posting “RIP BILL NYE” even though he is very much alive. This is all a bit macabre, I suppose, but no one wants to be that guy posting some bad Wikipedia entry saying that Miley Cyrus died. Again.
Hat tip to @WFMU.