A French radio station RFI on Monday mistakenly published obituaries for a number of prominent people who are still very much alive, including that of Britain’s Queen Elizabeth, Brazilian football icon Pele and actors Clint Eastwood and Brigitte Bardot.
The station, however, immediately removed the untimely obituaries from its website of Radio France Internationale and partner platforms, and apologizing for it describing it as “a technical problem”.
“A technical problem has resulted in the publication of numerous obituaries on our French site. We are working to rectify this serious bug, and we apologise to all concerned as well as those who follow us and put their trust in us,” RFI tweeted.
Media houses and broadcasters are often known to have obituaries prepared beforehand in order to be able to publish it promptly when a death is announced.
However, the blunder happened when RFI was moving its website to a different content management system, according to its statement reported by BBC.
RFI’s statement further said that “around a hundred” draft stories were published in error – not just to its own site but to partner sites including Google and Yahoo.
Some other prominent people who made the cut on this occasion are French businessman Bernie Tapie, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, former US President Jimmy Carter, Cuba’s Raul Castro, and cinema icons Alain Delon, Sophia Loren, Jean-Paul Belmondo, and director Roman Polanski.