After the repeated reports and predictions about Michael Jackson’s finances either proved to be flat-out lies or full of inaccuracies, the media have found a new issue for which to speculate: Jackson’s health.
Another dose of ‘Jackson is dying’ reports are making the rounds from tabloid sources. This time he supposedly has a superbug staph infection … or an infected face?…. Or was it an infected nose?
This is the latest in a series of hatefully speculative reports which are unconfirmed, but are being picked up by so-called reputable news agencies anyway. Surely they can’t be so desperate for Jackson news that they would grab at anything as long as it has ‘Michael Jackson’ in the headline? Wrong.
Back in December an alleged author, who some say wanted to get attention for an unauthorized biography of the King of Pop, claimed Jackson had emphysema and a rare genetic illness; oh yeah, and he supposedly need a transplant to live… blah, blah, blah (see Jackson Health Rumors a Total Fabrication).
The story turned out to be a steaming pile of crap.
Every news agency and online blog with more than 3 visitors picked up the story without asking how this guy would know Jackson’s current health status; without asking or receiving any type of verification for it. But the story(ies) traveled all over the world almost without a single question.
Whatever Jackson’s health status is, quite frankly, is none of the media’s business; especially a media who have — generally concerning Jackson — been the most shameless, infuriating, and lousy collection of know-nothings many of us have ever seen.
None of these people, by the way, would answer any questions about their own health if some random stranger approached them on the street. To him, the media’s intrusion is the equivalent of some stranger asking him about the results of his physical.
Their latest Themla-Louise cliff diving happened during the 2005 trial in which Jackson was falsely accused of molestation and acquitted on all counts. Every detail was true…until it wasn’t. Every story with a salacious tone was spread without any verification. If it sounded like it could be true – based on a pre-existing hatred of Jackson – then it must have been ‘true’, and thus, unworthy of independent investigation.
Regardless of whether this current ‘staph’ story is true or not, the half-assed reporting about it is unacceptable.
Most current online reports consist solely of repeating the original story. Don’t cite a UK tabloid and merely parrot the story without doing any independent investigation whatsoever, especially when the story involves an allegation which could be either true or false.
I guess I seem to be forgetting that the negative — be it a silly story or a legacy-destroying allegation — is ALWAYS unquestioned. And, thus, it is ALWAYS true when it comes to Jackson.
No one is advocating not reporting about Jackson. What I and too many other people are stressing, though, is that those with a platform should know what the hell they’re talking about BEFORE they actually snatch an unconfirmed report from its tabloid source.
Hoping to get lucky (hoping its true) is not an excuse for laziness, apathy or hypocrisy.
Further, aren’t we supposed to be ignoring this alleged “has been” anyway? For someone whom the media have tried for years to convince us is no longer relevant, he sure gets a lot of media coverage!
These same people may as well write articles like “Jacko Breathed Today” or “Michael Jackson Said to have Taken a Dump”. However, my confusion is getting the better of me as my sense of hypocrisy increases.
I thought we, the public, wasn’t supposed to care about him because he’s the ‘fallen King of Pop’. Right?! Apparently not. I’m sure any 70’s icon would kill to get the kind of attention Jackson gets for simply minding his own business.
What is also readily apparent is the illegality of actually waiting on confirmation of a Jackson story before reporting it. I mean, it has to be against the law to find out the truth of a Jackson matter before reporting.
If viewed positively, fear of a felony is the only acceptable explanation as to why I log on and am greeted with a slew of crap-tacular links around the world with the same unverified information about Jackson’s health, finances, family, etc.
If viewed negatively, I can only assume that those in charge are inept, confused, lazy, brainless, simply don’t care, or are stricken with some unknown metal defect which masquerades as ‘group think’ causing them not to care about the truthfulness (or lack thereof) of such reports.