“Sorry, who died again?”

Initial press reports neatly relayed the official press release which deliberately gives no details regarding the manner of death and asks “that everyone respects the family’s privacy at this very sad time”.

The police report that followed next did not go beyond basic detail, either: the police had been called to an address where they found someone dead and the next of kin confirmed the dead person’s identity.

So the press pack swiftly moved on to the daily business of competing with each other over who can outdo the other on bringing out the (better? worse? more?) details of the circumstances of the person’s passing.

Could they not have waited that little bit longer and leave it for the loved ones to decide whether they wanted that to be brought out into the public domain and in which way?

Why this rush, possibly at the expense of people involved?!

All well and good, this 24-hour hunger for immediate news all the time, but at moments like these I wish people would just slow down… think for a moment: Within an hour of the news of his demise being published, comments went from celebrating the person to making him the subject of something… did no one else notice that?

I don’t care however true any ponderings or ‘eye-witness reports’ over a person’s physical and/or mental state in the run-up to his untimely demise may be; are such ponderings, particularly their timing, always appropriate? Was it really too much to hold on just that little bit more and consider the human being over the story for just that little bit longer?

Note: this post wasn’t written in some self-righteous sense of wanting to defend any particular individual(s). I am posting this as a member of the public whose interest the press claim to serve when they publish someone’s official statement asking for respect, only to instantly move on to things that then, in my eyes, show blatant disregard of that very request.

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