On December 18, 2013, actress Moira Kelly became the victim of a death hoax which circulated throughout the Internet. It was announced on a Facebook page that she had passed away and there was a R.I.P page actually made for her. The message was quickly rebutted and it was confirmed that Moira Kelly had not died and the news announcement was fake but it does raise a bigger issue and that is who would make up such an announcement about her and why?
Moira Kelly in 2013 last acted in a guest role on “Drop Dead Diva” and that was her one acting role of the year. Was this death hoax a publicity move by her public relations team to get people discussing her acting career and bring her to the attention of directors and producers or was it some misguided attempt by a fan to bring attention to her?
The death hoax was not the only fake Internet message that Moira Kelly has had to deal with in the month of December as the very next day another fake news report was circulating the Internet that she made more money than any other actress in Hollywood in 2013. Thus in the course of 48 hours Moira Kelly has been subject to both questions about whether she is alive and then about whether her investments have resulted in her amassing more money than any of the working actresses in Hollywood.
The choice of Moira Kelly as the subject of these fake Internet messages makes one wonder whether someone is trying to help her career or undermine her career. The hoaxes will be topics that can be discussed if she is interviewed about them but once she likely informs any interviewer that neither she nor her agents are the source of these Internet hoaxes than a more difficult question will arise and that is why would someone choose her and is her career in trouble or has some other personal trouble arisen that the public should be aware of?
Moira Kelly’s December death hoax and wealth hoax are examples of how the Internet can undermine the credibility of an entertainer and how one message can encompass the world of social media within minutes if not seconds.