Disappearing Madeleine? Mohammed's Teddy Bear? Dead Darwin in Panama?
The reason these story's are inflated to fill the obligatory news slots in the media schedules is because they are CHEAP. In the constant drive for efficiency and economy, saving money and resources, real news has now become too expensive to report.
The same thing is happening all across media-land. Rather than make proper TV programs, it's much, much cheaper, and far less difficult for today's clumsily marketing-educated media studies graduate darlings, to stick a bunch of people in a room and film them arguing. Cue the birth of reality TV.
Today's schedule: some unknown woman crying on telly and saying how it's all gone wrong; some program telling you your house is too dirty / clean / large / small / badly decorated and you need to buy product X or be socially embarrassed forever; a bunch of no-hopers eating crap in a field somewhere foreign; and of course sport. And the weather - but not very accurate, cos we can't afford a satellite feed every day. Why bother investigating stuff and being creative when people will just suck up this crap instead?
The media is gradually vanishing up its own bottom. One day there will be a loud shlurping noise, a nasty smell, and an empty page where the news used to be. But it will be CHEAP.