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Journal Pioneer reporter's tweet about a day with no obituaries in the print edition went viral.
Journal Pioneer reporter's tweet about a day with no obituaries in the print edition went viral. - SaltWire Network

Journal Pioneer reporter's tweet about a day with no obituaries goes viral

SUMMERSIDE, P.E.I.  - A tweet about a little slice of Prince Edward Island newspaper life seems to have struck a chord with people all over the world.

In its Aug. 9 edition, the 153-year-old Journal Pioneer carried no obituaries in its pages.

Death is big news on P.E.I., so when the local daily newspaper publishes an edition without any obituaries people notice. Their fears that the well-read daily feature had been accidentally left out were allayed as, in a rare occurrence, the Journal Pioneer simply did not receive any death notices for local funeral homes.

The absence prompted two calls to the office from concerned readers.

Which led reporter Colin MacLean to tweet the following on his @JournalPMacLean Twitter account: “There were no obituaries in today's paper. People are calling, wondering what happened to them. Just ... nobody died.”

In 24 hours, the tweet garnered more than 17,000 likes, more than 2,600 retweets, more than 156 comments and by Friday afternoon had reached approximately 1.3 million people.

Folks really seemed to get a kick out of the observation.

Some took it literally in that, well, nobody in the world died that day. Which was apparently the plot of a “Torchwood” TV episode?

There was also a lot of talk of the zombie apocalypse. As in, no deaths meant there must be undead.

Others, mostly from large urban centres, were amused at what they saw as the quaint nature of P.E.I. news.

And more, mostly journalists or people connected to the newspaper industry, were nostalgic for local newspapers.

We've collected some of the more interesting and funny responses here. 

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