Betty White Is Not Dead So Put Away Your Sackcloth and Ashes

Fret not: Despite Facebook posts to the contrary, Betty White is alive and kicking. Rumors of her demise are thanks to America’s poor reading comprehension skills and some confusion over her bottle-blonde hairdo.

The L.A. Times confirms that the 92-year-old star remains here with us in the land of the living, specifically shooting an episode of Hot in Cleveland. Whence the confusion? This wasn’t a deliberate death hoax, but rather a case of America misreading a satirical news item:

“Actress Betty White, 92, dyes peacefully in her Los Angeles home” read a headline published Wednesday on the satirical website Empire News.
The story, which purported to quote the actress’ agent, was a tongue-in-cheek piece about White not being a natural blond.

The piece began zipping around Facebook and the joke sailed over more and more readers’ heads because nobody reads anything more than the headline. This is, in fact, the second such Golden Girls-related incident—an old news story catapulted Facebook users into mourning for Rue McClanahan (a.k.a. Blanche) back in June, even though she’s been dead since 2010. So please, do your due diligence when sharing any news items related to beloved celebrities.

Photo via Getty.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Share Tweet Submit Pin