It's not news when someone isn't somewhere, but Facebook's top celebrity author sure convinced the internet otherwise: Sheryl Sandberg has thousands buzzing about the fact that she was not aboard a crashed plane today, despite zero initial reports that she ever was.
At a time when many plane passengers are injured (or dead)—and news confusion is bouncing around—it's the epitome of crassness to use disaster as publicity, a public broadcast to her 1.2 million Facebook followers and beyond. It's also a testament to just how corporately beloved Sandberg is that she can pointlessly insert herself into a national news story via Facebook status—that she did not board the wrecked flight out of South Korea, choosing an alternate ticket so that she could use bonus miles—and not receive any backlash. Fawners are happy to be relieved about something they weren't ever worried about to begin with. Everyone adores the myth figure of the frugal exec, I suppose.
It would've made sense for Sandberg to correct any public rumors about her non-existent seat on the plane (or share the message only with friends), as Facebook's value as a publicly traded company rests heavily on her role as COO. It'd be responsible. But there was never even a whisper that she was in any danger until she forced the topic—conveniently, right at the tail end of an overseas publicity tour for Lean In. All of the top Google News results for the non-story of Sandberg's non-escape prominently mention her book.