Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby was not arrested while driving a rented Porsche in Ottawa, Canada, two days ago, says the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Despite newspaper reports and a blast of social media tweets and posts claiming otherwise, Crosby was not detained at a police station. He was training in Vail, Co., when the alleged incident occurred. “As far as we know, it was a completely manufactured nonstory, so it's hilarious to watch how it exploded, as much as social media can explode at 5 o'clock in the morning,” said DJ Gallo, founder and editor of humor site www.sportspickle.com.
Never has it been so easy to take a fabricated story or the faked report of a celebrity death and send the news so quickly into the Twittersphere. The Crosby misinformation first appeared on several dozen English-language news websites under the Quebecor Media Inc. umbrella, giving it the green light for others to share. “This is where we need to make sure there isn't a rush to publish,” said Heather Starr Fiedler, an associate professor of multimedia at Point Park University. “The role of gatekeeper is paramount because we cannot expect the public to not share things. The original Crosby post appeared on numerous Sun Media sites sometime after 1:30 a.m. Wednesday. About an hour later, Ottawa police Chief Charles Bordeleau tweeted that his department “had no dealings with Mr. Crosby” and one of his officers, Sgt. Steven Hodgson, told 1310News in Ottawa that the story was “an out-and-out blatant lie.” Across the Eastern U.S. and Canada, people were waking up to the startling news that straight arrow Crosby, according to “sources,” had been taken to Ottawa police headquarters for fingerprinting and a mug shot.