The Jacko Factor

1:45 PM SHAMON!!!!

June 26, 2009

2 Min Read
The Jacko Factor

1:45 PM -- It was always a matter of when, not if, a telecom company would use Michael Jackson's demise as a public relations springboard.

There are probably a number of instances, but here's one that dropped into EuroBlog's inbox, notable for not only capitalizing on the news of Jackson's fatality but for adding Twitter Inc. into the mix.

"Michael Jackson’s death caused Internet usage to swing not surge." So that's what was causing my nausea this morning -- swinging Internet usage. "The Internet is not about to collapse," states Simon Barlow, Product Manager, Internet and Online Distribution & Media Services, at pan-European operator Interoute Communications Ltd.

Barlow, by the way, is believed to have once owned the Thriller album on vinyl and to have sported a haircut similar to Tito's back in the late 1970s.

But back to the Internet and the fact that it hasn't collapsed, which is something of a relief.

"What we have seen with Michael Jackson’s death is regular Internet users diverting their attentions towards specific websites. It is these websites that have seen unprecedented volumes of traffic, not the Internet as a whole." Ah...

"The difference here to other major events, such as Obama's inauguration speech, is that there is no continuous video or rich media event involved," adds the Interoute's man statement, though without a hint of whether this is a good or bad thing for the insatiable appetite of celebrity news lovers worldwide.

"So, whilst Twitter itself buckled under the strain, the 140 character tweets don’t make that much difference when it comes to taking capacity out of the Internet."

Could "Twitter itself" enter the mass media lexicon in days to come? Stay tuned for more pop-tastic revelations.

— Ray Le Maistre, International News Editor, Light Reading

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