THE NOT-SO-LATE BRITNEY SPEARS | It’s alive
Britney Spears is alive. As far as I know. Sober…maybe not. But alive.
Still, reports say that the Associated Press, the national news service (to which The Herald belongs) has prepared an obituary on the 26-year-old…umm…diva…singer…party animal…
Just in case she dies.
I had quietly pledged to myself that I’ve never write about Britney Spears on this blog. It amazes me to see CNN or Fox News devote precious airtime to the fact that she was late for some kind of custody hearing when there’s real news going on, but TV caters to the lowest-common-denominator. (Which has certainly contributed to newspapers doing some of the same thing, particularly if you read our staff blogs.)
Apparently, Spears’ recent bizarre behavior prompted the AP to put the major pieces of the story of Spears’ life together so that when she did die, all it would need is filling in the blanks on the death part. It’s a common practice for newspapers to prepare obits, or least have files on, major local public figures. Back when Bill Hodges was editor here, everyone on the newsroom staff went through and prepared a “write up” on themselves for background in case of an untimely demise. I think we lost all of those newsroom “obits” when we changed front-end systems about 10 years ago; besides, only R. V. Hight and myself are still left from those days and I’m quite sure R. V. will live forever.
The AP writer who penned the story about Spears’ obit asked the question: “When young celebrities live lives of obviously dangerous excess, is it time for news organizations to begin preparing for early exits for the under-30 crowd?”
Preparing the obits in advance is time-consuming work, especially for someone like Spears…who may very well live another 70s years, but at the same time has racked up an impressive collection of very strange public incidents..
“I don’t think anyone particularly likes this part of the business,” said the AP’s Lou Ferrar, “but it is something you need to do.”