Who are these people? McCartney, Clark, King (AP)
News of King's death was quickly followed by a related, if disturbing, Twitter trend: "Who is Rodney King?"
"Who is Rodney King?" Briauna Mariee, identified on Twitter as "First Queen Standing," tweeted upon seeing King's name trending.
"Is it bad that idk who Rodney King is," Twitter user Jiggy wrote, "cause I don't."
"Who is Rodney king again? I forgot," Bougie Bre asked, adding: "#serioustweet."
"Same thing I wanna know," user Carolina Girl tweeted.
"I'm not gone lie y'all," @isingiprayilove wrote. "I don't who [...] Rodney King is."
"Wikipedia it," Bennie Cooper suggested in response.
"Don't know who Rodney King is but we share the same last name," Raymond King, a self-described "semipro gamer," wrote on Twitter. "R.I.P."
King's death was certainly not the first to baffle Twitter users. Television icon Dick Clark, author Ray Bradbury, Bee Gees singer Robin Gibb, disco queen Donna Summer, CBS News interviewer Mike Wallace, "Where The Wild Things Are" author Maurice Sendak, singer Levon Helm, Beastie Boy rapper Adam Yauch and hairdresser Vidal Sassoon—all of whom died this year—ended up cycling through the microblogging service in a similar manner:Read More »from ‘Who is Rodney King?’ ‘Who is Dick Clark?’ ‘The Titanic was real?!?’ How death, major news events expose Twitter’s generation gap