Danny Walkinshaw reviews the week on the web

As news broke of the death of the “King of Pop” Michael Jackson, the online world creaked under the pressure as millions of people rushed to sites to check if it was true.

It is rare you hear of major websites such as Google News and Twitter crashing under the strain of online traffic. In fact, Google News had so many people trying to access stories about Jackson, it thought that it was being attacked by a virus.

Jackson’s death ahead of his sold-out 50 dates at the O2 Arena in London raised more than personal issues. One of the major discussion points on sites around the world has concerned the insurance coverage for the shows. Insurance Times’ story ‘Lloyd’s shares $400m Jackson exposure’ was popular with visitors to the site as the industry became eager to understand where lies the exposure. Another Insurance Times story ‘Talbot confirms Jackson event cancellation exposure’ had more details.

Another well-known figure, although perhaps not on Jackson’s scale, made a surprise return to the financial world. Former Aviva boss and Towergate director Patrick Snowball was announced as the new chief executive of Australian banking and insurance firm Suncorp. His appointment saw global news sites, particularly Down Under, latch on to the news about the man who was close to buying Royal Bank of Scotland Insurance.

“As the England cricket team braces itself for the challenge of the Ashes, a City veteran is making the trip Down Under with a turnaround task of his own,” reported the Sky News website.

The five most read stories at insurancetimes.co.uk this week

Snowball to head Australian insurer

Patrick Snowball becomes chief executive of Suncorp

Lloyd’s shares $400m Jackson exposure

Lloyd’s says losses “not likely to be significant”

John Kitson’s Blog

Johnson leaves CCV to head Paymentshield

CCV chief executive Tim Johnson leaves to lead Paymentshield, Stuart Pender now non-executive chairman

Towergate directors invested £10m to aid deal

Towergate Financial Services denied being put into administration