On this slow news day, #RIPSubwayJared is trending on Twitter, suggesting that Jared (of Subway diet fame) has passed on before his time... but no corroborating evidence has emerged to suggest that the hashtag is anything but another death hoax.
The #RIPSubwayJared hashtag seemingly came out of nowhere. Twitter is a breeding ground for "death hoaxes," short-lived and viral rumors of a celebrity's passing that blow up on the tweet and retweet-friendly microblogging service before anyone has a chance to check their veracity.
It sort of makes sense that the #RIPSubwayJared hashtag would take off. On one hand, it's an easy, offhand thing to make stupid jokes about, given the subject's somewhat singular reason for fame and his already tenuous position in pop culture.
Also, Subway's Jared is sort of not your standard well-known dude. After the Subway commercials stopped, he wasn't really in the public eye -- and few people could tell you for certain whether or not Jared has a Twitter handle or is active on social media sites to verify his status among the living.
Most of the tweets about the rumor are just silly, with little information and no news links:
#RIPSubwayJared He ditched eating Subway and ate at McDonalds. He then died of a heart attack due to the Big Mac. So sad. So very sad. :-(
— Dave (@weird4) May 5, 2014
#RIPSubwayJared he took off his pants and made millions
— Fukushima Sushi (@daze_gaze) May 5, 2014
— Steven Skinner (@SkinnerSteven) May 5, 2014
#RIPSubwayJared At least his family get a great choice from a variety of different coffins, linings, and suits! Add funeral cookies for £1
— meme harvey oswald (@ruinedpicnic) May 5, 2014
Some people seemed genuinely saddened by the misconception:
— tristan (@m293g920kk3) May 5, 2014
— SeanJPatrickCarney (@SocMalpractice) May 5, 2014
Others were invested in furthering the Subway death hoax:
— George Dubstep Bush (@hamsandcastle) May 5, 2014
However, many Twitter users noted that they had been on this merry-go-round before:
#RIPSubwayJared on Twitter is the best indication that Jared is alive and in great health.
— JRehling (@JRehling) May 5, 2014
Ultimately, the #RIPSubwayJared hashtag seems to be the weak revival of earlier death hoaxes involving Subway's Jared, and unlike past false rumors, there isn't even a fake story to go along with it.