I was just burned by a Daily Mail story and not eager to get hoaxed again, but this is interesting if true. A commenter at Cryptogon notes:
There is indeed a massive amount of shipping sitting idle around here. You can clearly see them off the southern coast of Singapore (where the main container ship harbour is), where they’re scattered across the horizon and on a recent flight to Malaysia, there is a large amount of shipping in the Johor Straits on the northern tip of Singapore, though its hard to say if they’re moving or not.
They won’t come into harbour (which incurrs fees) because there’s nothing to ship. The Western demand for consumer goods has tanked.
From my vague memory of a news report there are supposed to be about 750-800 ships out there.
It’s probably not the biggest congregation ever, but its certainly unprecedented for this neck of the woods.
Cryptogon: The Ghost Fleet of the Recession
Trevor Blake remarks that these idle ships are ripe to be remade into pirate utopias.