British R&B singer-songwriter Billy Ocean reportedly died on Saturday in Johannesburg, South Africa. The singer, 66, suddenly took ill while on a personal visit to South Africa and passed away shortly after he was taken to the hospital.
According to a report by Times1ve.co.za, the cause of death of the singer is not immediately known.
However, after the news went viral on the social media, it emerged that there is no truth to the report and that the singer is very much alive and well. It even took the singer himself to take to Twitter to confirm that he is alive and the news about his death is nothing more than a hoax.
“Contrary to the horrible and untrue rumours circulating this week, Billy is very much alive and well,” Ocean tweeted.
The report published by the website by Times1ve.co.za claimed that the news of Ocean’s sudden death was informed by local radio Spice FM.
The Snopes.com reported that the website is a fake news website which pretends to be a genuine website by mimicking the domain name of an original news organization. The website appears to be linked to TimesLive.co.za to deceive the readers.
In its disclaimer, the website claimed that the difference could be told by taking note of the “1” in their url.
“Before you read our disclaimer, we wish to state that, we are not connected to or linked to “Times Live” in any way. Take note of the number ‘1’ in our “TIMES1VE”. Please do not be deceived. Leave the web site immediately if you have found yourself in the wrong place,” read the disclaimer.
The news of his death also took the social media by surprise. Fans took to Twitter to discuss the death news hoax, the Business 2 Community reported.
“Why would someone lie about Billy Ocean dying?” wrote a user on Twitter.
Billy Ocean is the latest in the line of a long list of celebrities who fell victim to death hoaxes, which are published by fake websites. The list includes Jaden Smith, Angelina Jolie and Sylvester Stallone.