After rumors circulated yesterday that Usher had died in a car accident (someone even wrote a fake news report), the singer tweeted his fans that he was just fine.
Usher seemed to take the rumor in stride, tweeting: “‘I must’ve died and went to heaven…Alive and cold kickin a**!!”
The singer laughed off the incident, posting several sweaty and shirtless pictures of himself to prove he was alive and kicking, but word of his demise nearly sent his ex-wife Tameka over the edge. She tweeted her followers: “I dont play the death rumor games.. That almost killed me.”
Usher is only the most recent celeb to be declared dead by the tweets. A few days ago, Twitter’s “RIP Keke Palmer” hashtag had the actress fuming, telling followers: “Y’all ought to be ashamed of your damn self saying that I died!!!!! I have to answer my phone to hear my sister in got damn tears????????”
The quickness with which information is passed around these days on social media makes death hoaxes and rumors that much more potent. Although it’s easy for someone to mistakenly declare someone dead, once that information is passed around on Twitter, Facebook, and the like it takes on a life of its own and has very real consequences for those involved.