Internet Tries to Kill Steve Jobs

He's fine.

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Speculating about Steve Jobs's health was a full-time occupation this summer, and today the Internet scrutiny moved Apple's share price.

A report from CNN's iReport, a citizen journalism site with the tag line "Unedited. Unfiltered. News," ran a headline saying Jobs was rushed to the hospital after a heart attack.

Apple spokespeople say it's not true. The story has been pulled from iReport. (Silicon Alley Insider was on this early today.)

So what to make of this blip in the news cycle? It's an instructive lesson for investors. The scare is just another example of how quickly random headlines can sink your investments. Look at the errant posting of a six-year-old story about United's bankruptcy on September 8 that send shares down 75 percent during a single day before the mistake could be sorted out.

As for the Apple report, so far nobody is charging anything nefarious. But I can't see any reason to expect that the wide spigot of news now available to anybody with a Google Alert set for "Apple" won't be used to shelter market manipulators using tactics like this to push share prices around for illegal gain.

If nothing else, Apple's morning scare shows just how closely everyday stock jockeys need to follow the news.

TAGS:
stock market
Jobs, Steve
internet
Apple Inc.
  • Kirk Shinkle

    Kirk Shinkle is a senior editor for U.S. News Money and manages the Best Funds portal. Follow him on Twitter @KirkS or email him at kshinkle@usnews.com.

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