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Area Outlets Aggregate Casey Anthony Rumor From Nonexistent News Source

Contrary to what you may have read over the past few days (or received in a Palm Beach Post breaking news text message), it doesn't look like anybody actually knows where Casey Anthony is.

The Post sent out a text alert with a link to a story late Tuesday night that cites "an AOL news report" that says Anthony had moved to the West Palm Beach area. There was no link to the story -- which would have really helped, because AOL News doesn't exist anymore. It now goes by another name -- "Huffington Post."

In any case, the story, "Report: Casey Anthony living in West Palm Beach area," was quickly lifted wholesale and dumped onto the websites of the TC Palm, Sun-Sentinel, WFTV, and WPTV.

The TC Palm added a bit of context, citing random people who say they saw Anthony at churches and stoplights and things a few months ago. The question nobody answered: Where did this information come from?

The only recent Casey Anthony story on the Huffington Post doesn't mention her alleged West Palm Beach digs; it's an aggregation of People magazine story, however, that does:
Since walking out of jail on July 17, 2011, Anthony has moved around Florida, now settling in the West Palm Beach area. Spending most of her days online, Anthony has put on about 20 pounds, according to the friend.
First of all, it seems a little weird to call someone a "friend" after they go prancing over to People and telling the whole world where Anthony lives and that she's been eating a lot. Next, is one anonymous source on the People blog really enough to spawn a breaking news alert and online articles all over South Florida, attributed to nothing? Putting "Report:" in the headline gives some deniability if the story one day turns out to be bogus, but it seems readers are expecting at least a little discretion when it comes to quoting mysterious random people saying things about a woman who's been acquitted of this crime we're still for some reason totally furious about.

In any case, Gossip Extra has put out a $1,000 reward for anybody who can prove Anthony is living around here -- you know, with a signed lease or a photo or things that people trying to write true things usually look for before saying they're true things. Then we can all aggregate the actual news.

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Rich Abdill

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