Gossip columnist Liz Smith reported the death of writer Nora Ephron "hours" before it happened, the New York Times noted.
Smith, a friend of Ephron's, told the New York Times that her error in reporting the death early online was a "classic mistake" because she 'thought Nora was dead and I didn't want to bother the family."
The wrong report was unpublished, and Ephron did later die. Smith noted that “If I had an editor or a publisher, maybe I wouldn’t have done it."
This might even be considered a "classic" excuse, iMediaEthics notes.
Hat Tip: Gothamist