Thursday, July 24, 2008

That Senator Should Not Be President

I just received my weekly update from giving me the latest false rumors that have been circulating around the Internet via e-mail. Snopes, the Urban Legends debunking site, is my first-go when anyone sends me political poison, “too good to be true,” or photos that I think are impossible. I urge you to do the same *before* you forward what is possibly a fake and, probably, a damaging message.

This one included the expose of a message damaging to one of the presidential candidates. On first glance, it looks genuine; when you go to Snopes, you get the whole story, including the originator’s apology for making it up.

When someone sends me one of these, I check Snopes and then reply to the person with the site’s URL, requesting they forward it to all those who received their original false e-mail. Only fair, I say; having libeled someone, they are responsible for clearing the victim’s name.

We are so quick to express indignation, so slow to investigate. Perhaps we should ask:

Can you prove this?
No? Then why are you sending it?
Do you really believe the authority of the originator?

Find a hobby; another one.


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