Is Kirk Douglas Dead? 'People' Magazine's Headline Sparks Confusion
Talk about getting ahead of yourself: People unfortunately published an obituary for Kirk Douglas, despite the actor being not dead. "Not dead," as in, "very much still alive as far as anyone knows, please god, don't let him be dead, we're not ready." Whoever posted the obit to People magazine's website was obviously in some kind of post-Thanksgiving, turkey-induced haze because they missed the huge "DO NOT PUB" in the title. The obituary is long and detailed, albeit missing a few details, like Kirk Douglas' non-existent date of death, which is simply noted with the editorial placeholder "TK TK."
The obituary, as I'm writing this, is still live on People's site, which is at least a nice thing the story has in common with Douglas: they're both live. Zing! Anyway, we feel you, People. This could happen to any website, honestly. Writing obits ahead of time for aging celebrities isn't a unique thing: it's a practice many publications under take in order to be prepared to report for shocking, spur of the moment news. It's not a new practice by any means, and even newspapers and print publications have similar preparations. Welp! As anyone who works in the industry knows, online media is one giant mis-click waiting to happen, so let's all laugh it off, and all go watch Spartacus.
Images: Getty Images; People.com (3)