Break the Chain Well Hung

Created 8/30/2004 (8/30/2004) While the Internet is an unprecendented source of information, it's also a good source for entertainment. Unfortunately, the two are often indistinguishable, and once context is lost, a joke looks just like the news.

SAMPLE CHAIN LETTER TEXT

Thursday, August 12, 2004

American Idol's William Hung Found Dead of Heroin Overdose

7/13/2004 - Robert Krupto

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Las Vegas, NV - Kitschy American Idol Star William Hung, famous for his botching of Ricky Martin's "She Bangs," was found dead yesterday, apparently of an intentional heroin overdose. The announcement of his death sent shockwaves to the tens of people who still found him funny.

Ironically, Mr. Hung was found by a VH1 camera crew sent to begin filing "William Hung: Behind the 'Music.'" Viacom immediately decided to rename the special: "William Hung: fifteen minutes till death."

[Click to read full article...]

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Fame is a fickle friend. Those who come by it quickly (and inexplicably) are often subjects of rumors about untimely demises, substance abuses or some other unfortunate happenstance. Many folklorists believe the rumors are born of jealousy. We all want fame, but justify our inability to find it by believing that it is much less desirable than it seems to be. William Hung shot to fame on the popular talent hunt program, "American Idol." The man who was so bad he was good, found instant fame by being unashamed of his utter (and apparently unnoticed by him) lack of talent. His slightly off-key and emotionally flat renditions of popular music led to numerous live performances, radio and television interviews, even an album. Not bad for a guy who didn't even make the contest's cut.

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Rest assured, America's favorite crusty crooner is alive and well. The piece above is not a legitimate news article - a fact that should be obvious to just about anyone who has read the entire text. Unfortunately, what we find is that few people read the whole article. They scan the first few paragraphs to get the general idea, then act on it. As you go through this one, the signs of its farce become more obvious, but based on the first few paragraphs, one might be persuaded to believe.

The fake news article above is the work of BrokenNewz.com. In it's original form, the article bore the following footnote: " Copyright 2004 All rights reserved. Broken Newz, The Internet's Premiere Satire News." Further, the site describes itself:

"Broken Newz is a satire news and entertainment site. All names, except when public figures are being satirized due to their own stupidity, are made up and purely coincidental if connected in anyway. The stories listed on this site are not real (really)."

Both Hung and his father/manager have denied this article and reassure concerned fans that the UC Berkley student is alive and well.

Even if you are tempted to forward this one for its humor, consider that it is copyrighted material and should not be distributed without the owner's consent. Break this chain.

What Do You Think?

Category: No Joke Too Obvious
References: BrokenNewz.com

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