Thursday, September 25, 2008

Just the facts, ma'am

I only post when there's a formatting issue George isn't comfortable with, so please pardon this intrusion from his out-law.

I get a lot of email forwards from friends and family, usually of a sensationalist nature, and they almost always turn out to be false. Before you hit that "forward" button, and certainly before you trust anything sent to you via email, I urge you to make a habit of checking first.

Snopes is an independent group (mostly a husband and wife) who make their living figuring out if a given urban legend is true or not. That's spilled over into the land of email forwards, and their resource is absolutely invaluable. If you want the straight dope on something, give them a try first; they're fair, objective, and hard-working.

Particularly helpful in this campaign season are their sections on the candidates. I know I can't even count any more the number of messages I've been helpfully sent that Barack Obama is the anti-Christ or that John McCain declared on 60 Minutes that he was a "war criminal".

Here in one convenient place are links so you can tell your mom/friend/wife/husband/neighbor to quit forwarding false information.

There is no entry for poor Joe Biden, apparently he doesn't register on enough radars to be worth a page of his own.

I'll slink back into the shadows now and turn thing back over to their rightful owner.


Anonymous said...

Good for you George. I use Snopes a lot. I really get tired of receiving e-mail misreprentations (lies). I do enjoy sending the Snopes information back to the cretin who sent it to me. I am amazed to learn that only two people are responsible for the service. Keep up the good work.

The South Plainsman said...

There are a lot of emails out there that are pure BS. I get them from my friends on the left and right. I always keep Snopes around to send back to them.

Doesn't help much with what the press prints, though. And they can be wrong both ways at times as well.

We all see things through the lenses of our own perceptions. That can create situations where everyone passionately believe they have the right facts, but others see them diffferently. That is why we have elections, I guess, and depend on the majority to sort it out.

Doesn't work too badly most of the time.

Anonymous said...

Jeff told me about Snopes a long time ago -- saved me from egg on my face more than once. It is amazing how many wrongs are out there. I usually look at the sender -- tells me a lot about their beliefs, and that's not always pleasant. -- Jeff's Sister Denise!

Max Fischer said...

I've been snopin' for a couple years and it's an invaluable tool to fight back against the, uh, tools in the Ff:'d and "reply to all" world.

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