The Avril Lavigne Death Hoax That Won't Die

This Conspiracy Theory That Avril Lavigne Died & Was Replaced By a Lookalike Is Oddly Convincing

A small group of Twitter activists is of the firm belief that singer Avril Lavigne died in 2004 and was replaced by her body double, Melissa Vandella. During a time when everyone was supposed to celebrate Mother's Day, a conspiracy theory on Twitter has brought out a group of truthers. In a sequence of narration and side-by-side photos, @givenchyass made the case for why the Avril Lavigne of today is actually Melissa Vandella.

Social researcher Lauren Rosewarne from the University of Melbourne said conspiracy theories that blow up over the internet were based on the same formula as a "chain letter". After all, she hasn't gotten this much publicity since "Girlfriend" was released.

It's back again! Conspiracy theories regarding death and resurrection of celebrities are far too common. Others quote pictures of the singer with the word Melissa written in her hand.

Theorists have analysed the shape of Avril's nose, her autograph and her voice - which they claim has had a different tone and been increasingly out of tune since 2003.

The next year, Avril's grandfather passed away, leading her into depression, and apparently hanging herself in British Columbia.

She is now working on a new album.

The official Avril Lavigne website allegedly initially listed her height at 1.58m, back in 2002. Some of the top responses to her tweet were: "Happy Mother's Day, Melissa" and "Melissa, it's all OK, we're here for you". Another example is when Avril tweeted to promote a healthy snack, to which a jokester replied with "Avril Lavigne would never promote a slim secret bar".

Ms Lavigne is active on social media platforms and her latest tweet on 14 May is a snap of herself and her mother on the occasion of Mother's Day in the USA and Canada. "The jig is up Melissa" which garnered more than 15,000 retweets.

The fans have, of course, broken down their very convincing evidence thoroughly. And the more people add to it, the longer the thread becomes.

The blog was created to "demonstrate how easy it is to launch a great online conspiracy theory", according to BuzzFeed journalist Ryan Broderick, whose blog reference in 2015 accidentally revived rumors.

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