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A phone rings at 6:08 p.m. in Arlington, Va. A 45-year-old man picks up. The caller doesn’t even have the chance to offer a greeting.
“I am still alive,” reports Ian MacKaye, the frontman of such punk acts as Minor Threat and Fugazi, and the founder of Washington’s Dischord Records.
This would not be news except that The Sun and apparently many other organizations had been told that MacKaye was, in fact, dead. We were told that he died Monday night at Baltimore’s St. Agnes Hospital. A call to the hospital found no evidence of such a patient. We followed up with calls to Dischord (left a message) and to MacKaye’s home.
“I am happy to report that I am not dead,” says MacKaye. He and the record company had been blasted with calls, he says, after premature reports of his death were posted on MySpace and Wikipedia. He says he hasn’t been able to find the MySpace reference, but had the Wikipedia posting removed — and then re-removed, once someone reinserted the false news.