You've seen the headlines claiming Beyonce and Jay-Z are divorcing. (Via Getty Images)
This round of rumors started with a lengthy piece in the New York Post Saturday. It cited unnamed sources claiming Bey and Jay are on the verge of breaking up but might stay together for the sake of their brands and businesses.
And Wednesday the Daily News made similar claims — saying the couple would "address the rumors" in September, when their lucrative "On The Run" tour ends.
So do you believe the seemingly unbelievable: that this power couple will split? Here are the three key things you should actually consider — no unnamed sources allowed.
First, this all started in May with the infamous elevator incident. There was no hiding the ugly fight caught on camera between Beyonce's sister and Jay. There were rumors it was over the rapper's wandering eye. (Via TMZ)
Bey, Jay and Solange Knowles released a statement that week that they'd moved forward as a family. (Via TMZ)
Second, just a few days after that elevator footage was released, pictures of Beyonce with a reddened finger emerged. Outlets speculated she'd removed her tattoo on her ring finger – the one she'd gotten in place of an engagement ring. No comment from her camp on that. (Via E!, Radar Online, Daily Mirror)
And third, the place Beyonce comments most is on Instagram. Her account has stuck to a message of solidarity with Jay-Z over the past weeks as they travel together for the tour. During this week of divorce rumors, she posted a a picture of Jay-Z and their daughter, Blue.
The Daily News' source calls the Instagramming "damage control." Yes, Beyonce and Jay-Z have carefully controlled images — so much so that some even say all the divorce talk could've been started by the couple as a way to drive publicity for their tour.
Beyonce did, after all, change the lyrics to her 2006 song "Resentment" when performing it June 28 — the song is about cheating, and she said "been ridin' with you for 12 years," instead of the original "six years" in the lyrics. She and Jay have been together for about 12 years. So, hint? Carefully choreographed marketing move? (Via YouTube / Rebecca Appuliese)
Plus, HuffPost's Stephanie Marcus makes this point: "Beyonce was able to keep her entire album a secret right up until the moment it dropped, and yet suddenly someone in her camp won't stop leaking secrets to The New York Post?"
So is there any reality to these rumors, or has the media's tendency to simply re-report given false validity to the story?
The New York Daily News is already riding the next wave. Its latest headline: that Beyonce's career as a single woman could be even more legendary.
Well, we could be on board with legends — if only we knew whether these stories were fables.