On Feb. 6, 2024, reports surfaced claiming that Toby Keith Covel, known professionally as Toby Keith, had died. The claim was true.
According to Keith's official social media accounts and multiple reputable news organizations, the American country singer, actor, and record producer died at age 62 due to stomach cancer. Early on the morning of Feb. 6, Keith's personal social media accounts and website posted a notice of his death as follows:
— Toby Keith (@tobykeith) February 6, 2024
Keith posted a statement in June 2022 announcing that he was diagnosed with cancer the previous fall and had spent the previous six months in chemo, radiation, and surgery.
— Toby Keith (@tobykeith) June 12, 2022
Soon after reports of Keith’s death started circulating on social media, Snopes readers flooded our website to determine whether they were real or a hoax.
Keith has been the subject of false rumors in the past, such as when a death hoax was posted on the satirical website Mediamass in October 2023.
False death announcements are a common form of internet junk news designed to convince gullible readers to go for clickbait or fall for phishing scams. Here's a deeper look into the misinformation trend, and here's a running list of celebrities that have been targets of it.