Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Is it a Hoax, maybe a lie, or just a rumor?

Maybe you should find out first before you spread it around.

A friend recently forwarded me an e-mail about StarBucks and how they weren’t supporting out troops in the Middle East and should be boycotted. This is a person I’ve known since college and is a fine man in all regards. He’s that kind of friend that you know you could trust with anything and over the years I have found him to be beyond reproach. He’s someone who would never dream of spreading gossip or stories about someone even if he though they were true.

Yet here on the net he was only all to willing to press the forward button. So what makes such a person so eager to blindly forward an email without even a moment’s though or investigation? That is a question I wish I could answer but somehow I fear that I never will. It is possibility one of the great mysteries of the internet. Certainly not something we’ll answer here today but ……anyway.

I immediately went to StarBucks web site and found the information to refute the email I had received. It took less than 5 minutes to discover that this email was incorrect and should not be circulating. I took a moment and sent a reply to everyone on the mail list including the friend about what the facts were and where they could find out the information to verify what I had written.

I felt good knowing that I had helped to kill an untrue story.
But guess what I found the next morning in my email box. The same email sent by three other people I know. Again I sent them the email that I had sent the night before. But this story only shows how things on the net never die and that even people that I consider reasonable and caring people will forward almost anything they receive in an email without any checking or verifying.

Folks this is something that is against the whole concept of the web. The web is the one place in the world where an almost unlimited amount of information is available. That means correct information should rule but the sad truth is that too many people don’t check things out that they hear or see on the web. They just hit that forward button and keep the junk flowing.

So with the though that in mind that if people knew where to check things out maybe they would do it I am listing my favorite sites for checking out on rumors, stories, hoaxes, and such.

Please check with one or more of these sites BEFORE you send on junk you get in your email box. (political content) (chain letters)

Just remember this stuff is as bad as or worse than SPAM so keep that in mind when you consider forwarding anything.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Boy is that the truth. I get this junk all the time and I wish people would check it out sooner rather than later.