A Wikipedia hoax, carried out by an Irish sociology student as part of a "globalisation experiment", fooled newspaper and publications around the globe, it's been revealed.
22-year-old Shane Fitzgerald added a fake quote to French composer Maurice Jarre's Wikipedia page after Jarre's death, which then appeared in obituaries published in the Guardian, the London Independent, on the BBC Music Magazine website and in Indian and Australian newspapers.
"One could say my life itself has been one long soundtrack. Music was my life, music brought me to life, and music is how I will be remembered long after I leave this life. When I die there will be a final waltz playing in my head, that only I can hear", were the words Fitzgerald made up for Jarre.
The quote's lack of referenced sources saw it taken down by moderators of Wikipedia within minutes, but Fitzgerald continued to edit the page, adding the quote, until it stayed up for more than 24 hours.
"I didn't expect it to go that far. I expected it to be in blogs and sites, but on mainstream quality papers? I was very surprised", Fitzgerald told the Irish Times, as he has since gone public and contacted those fooled with the truth about the hoax.