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The Cashing In On Anna Nicole's Death

By geozone     Feb 11, 2007 in World
Within half an hour of the news of Anna Nicole's death, memorabilia on her life ranging from dolls to poker chips with her image on them were offered on eBay. By Friday, one day after her death, the number of items listed had swelled to almost 2,700.
Elsewhere on the net, one website owner started selling farewell T-shirts to former supermodel with sayings such as "Anna Nicole R.I.P." and "I fathered Anna Nicole's baby and all I got was this stupid T-shirt" written on them.
The media, of course, has engaged in a feeding frenzy. NBC and Fox both aired specials on Anna Nicole's death. Her death has been the centerpiece of all the entertainment news shows and a topic of discussion on Larry King Live.
The public is buying if not fuelling the frenzy. Fox's viewership had a 2.23 million viewership the night of Anna Nicole's death which is at least 400,000 more viewers than what they would normally get on a typical weeknight.
"This is just a real feast for some people out there, and particularly on the internet," said a USC professor of journalism. "For every person in public life there is a blogger, or in this case many bloggers, behind them."
Entertainment and personality websites experienced a whopping 54% increase in traffic once Smith's death became known. Technorati reported over 14,000 blogs posted news and opinions on the death.
LiveJournal reported that Anna Nicole's entry in Wikipedia went into overdrive upon news of her death. Over 300 entries were made within the time frame of 2 hours. Site administrators were very busy keeping out vandalism and editing out libelous entries.
Finally there is the infamous "death video" of Smith being wheeled on a stretcher from the hotel where she collapsed. It was sold for a reported $640,000.
One wonders if the capitalizing on her death by those who never even really knew her and those who did is even more tragic than her life and death itself.
Your thoughts on this are most welcome.
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