it’s true! i read it on the internet!

Seriously?  It’s on the Internet so it must be true?  I am amazed by the number of people who believe this.

I was chatting with Scuba Man the other day when he stated that a popular personality, Mr. Yummy, is gay.  Scuba knows I think Mr. Yummy (names have been changed to protect the innocent) is a hottie.  I know that he said it just to tease me.  But, I couldn’t resist.

I asked him how he knew this.  It turns out that so and so read it on the Internet and I could look it up for myself.  Being the skeptic I am, I did just that.

I keep up with current events and something of this stature was sure to have been reported.  This was something I had never heard before and I was curious as to how prevalent and true this information was.

Oh my God!  I did find it!  All over the Internet!  The National Enquirer reported it!  Gawker reported it!  All the ‘ask’ type sites where people ask questions and other readers answer them reported it several times!

Yet, reputable news sites and interviews with Mr. Yummy state that his personal life is never up for discussion.  Ever.  He has said he wants a family, he wants children, but that is all he’s ever said in an interview.

Personally, I don’t care what his sexual orientation is.  He’s a gorgeous specimen of a man.  He’s great at his craft.  Knowing his personal life doesn’t change either of those statements.

I find it hard to understand that people will actually believe what they read and what they hear, without question.  I even sometimes question reputable news organisations.  None of them are unbiased any more.  I hold Dan Rather and the CBS News reporting of the 2004 United States Presidential Election as proof.

I could make a statement, here on my blog, about a personality.  Whether it’s true or not, someone somewhere will repeat it as being true.  Who I am to know this about this person?  I can preface it with “its been reported” and despite the fact that I don’t say who reported it, some people will take that as gospel.

Why are we so inclined to believe things reported, regardless of where the report comes from?  Just because it is all over the Internet, does that make it true?  Are we that gullible?

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4 Responses to it’s true! i read it on the internet!

  1. melsar93 says:

    I call this Scoble’s 12th Internet Law:

    One other thing? Never expect bloggers to do fact checking or original reporting. Even me. But if a blog survives 24-hours without anyone refuting the facts? That’s when rumors turn to belief.

  2. Hi Seashell,
    Sometimes people start making inuedos…someone else repeats them as fact…and then it must be true. I think a lot of trouble is cause by idle gossip. I live in an expat community, where to be honest, many of them have nothing better to do all day than just that!
    Newspapers…I don’t have a lot of time for either…perhaps I’ve become more cynical in my old age 8)

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