Jackson Death Crashes Google

Michael Jackson’s death shows underlying weakness in modern tech

When the news of Michael Jackson’s death hit the airwaves on Friday, it just wasn’t newspapers , televisions and radios that were buzzing, it was the Internet and Twitter, too.

But unlike the traditional forms of news gathering, it was quickly found there is an innate weakness with the digital age form of communications – information overload.

Google showed its sensitivity to so many people looking for information on the King of Pop, it thought it was under attack by malware/spyware hackers so shut down for 30 minutes leaving grieving fans in a mess. At one stage micro-blogging network Twitter also bit the dust after recording more than 100,000 tweets an hour.

A side-effect of social commentating and today’s media with regard to Jackson’s death was how some celebrities have become their own little media centres. Case in point, actor Ashton Kutcher, who lectured his one million Twitter followers with such pearls of wisdom as “I plea to the press to respect his wishes of maintaining the anonymity of his children,” and even telling users to boycott news outlets by asking them “to refuse to consume media that does not respect the anonymity of Michaels (sic) children.”

With many pundits stating that the end is nigh for the likes of newspapers and magazines, the crashes also sent out a warning to consumers that modern media does have its own Achilles Heel.