Did you hear the one about how US Supreme Court Justice John Roberts is quitting the bench? It's nonsense, as US website RadarOnline found out the hard way.

The site reported its exclusive on Thursday morning, sending Washington into a minor spin -- Roberts has only been on the bench since 2005 and, at age 55, could be expected to serve another two decades. Fox News reported the story hesitantly, crediting unnamed sources, while Twitter and the blogosphere didn’t hesitate at all. The Drudge Report and the Huffington Post reported the rumours in full.