Vilasrao Deshmukh is dead.

Oh wait! He is critical.

On second thoughts, he is stable.

This is what happened throughout the day today. For those unaware, Vilasrao Deshmukh is an Indian politician who has been the two time chief Minister of the state of Maharashtra of which Mumbai is a part. As I write this post, he is being treated at a hospital in Chennai and is reported to be under observation but in stable condition.

On the internet however he has already been pronounced dead several times over with a small tweet enough to snowball into frenzy.

With great power comes great responsibility. This is the oft repeated corny line from the comic book Spiderman. Today it was not the media to be blamed. To be fair to them they held on to their horses. Today individuals like me and you were to be blamed.

For the smallest of reasons we take to twitter or facebook, forgetting that posting something on these sites is akin to shouting from our rooftops in physical terms.

Yes internet is liberating but where do we draw the line? Yes it is informative but how do we sift through the junk to find what really is of some consequence to us?

All I know is being one of the people to jump the gun I am red faced as I write this. Time for some social networking etiquette anyone?