Buckingham Palace had to release a statement Friday morning to assure the British people — and the rest of the world — that Queen Elizabeth has not become the latest beloved public figure to not make it to the end of 2016.
Rumors that the 90-year-old monarch had died raced across the Internet, following a post Thursday by a spoof BBC account.
Looks like a fake BBC account reporting that the queen is dead pic.twitter.com/kVKYucUv88
— Anthony Cheung (@AWMCheung) December 29, 2016
In order to end the rumors, a Buckingham Palace spokesman said Friday morning: “The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh continue to recover from their heavy colds.”
The statement acknowledged that the queen and her husband have been ailing over the Christmas holidays, the reason that they postponed or canceled some of their usual holiday rituals. They delayed for a day their trip from London to their Sandringham country estate and were unable to attend Christmas Day mass.
Of course, that statement may not satisfy some in the Twittersphere. As the publication Metro noted, conspiracy theorists have accused the British press of trying to cover up the queen’s supposed passing by using the #mediablackout to spread their claims.
One person even claimed to have spotted television news teams setting up outside Buckingham Palace, with BBC staff wearing black in preparation to go into mourning.
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