The corporation's web news pages are again copied by hoaxers, this time claiming Britney died in a tragic pretzel van accident...
The BBC are tonight (June 13) threatening legal action against pranksters who put out a spoof news story claiming to be from their website, claiming that BRITNEY SPEARS had died in a car crash.
The mocked-up story, which was obviously a joke, said the superstar had been killed earlier today by a white pretzel delivery truck in New York, and that the driver had said “Oops, I did it again” following the smash.
The fake webpage looked identical to one circulated recently which claimed that Hear’say singer Suzanne Shaw had committed suicide. The page had been created to look like a BBC news page and the URL circulated on the net.
Despite being clearly nonsense, the Britney story soon spread like wildfire around the net, with some people giving it credence.
A spokesperson at Britney‘s label Jive told NME.COM: “It’s just complete rubbish. But these things happen all the time.”
But the BBC are taking a dimmer view of the hoax.
A spokesperson there told NME.COM that they had tracked the fake Internet report back to a server in California and that they were currently in talks with their solicitors to get the page removed.
“We want some redress, as we do take this sort of thing very, very seriously. We’re currently talking to our solicitors,” he explained, though he added that data protection laws meant the perpetrators would be difficult to find.
However, he stressed: “This is not a case of hacking into the BBC website. It’s an impression of our website that’s been copied and put into another server. It has no connection to us whatsoever. It’s all just rather annoying.”
It is not yet clear whether the same people are responsible for both hoaxes.