Posted By Kathleen David on April 18, 2013
Yesterday CNN got a serious black eye for reporting hearsay as news using those nine words “I’ve got a source who has told me…” which is an automatic red flag for me for things I see around the Internet. The mysterious Source apparently is an individual that knows all and tells all even when there is no verification for what they said.
Rumors and the like flying around the Internet like bats in a cave right before sunset.
I take anything I hear on the Internet with a big ol’ grain of salt. I double check to make sure what I am reading is true before I pass it on. Even trusted sources get the once over before I’ll believe it. Especially deaths, the number of times various people have been reported, falsely, to be deceased would be a book in itself.
Fandom has its own rumor mill that wildly speculates about whatever the fans are talking about. I know this for a fact because apparently there was a rumor that went around the Internet that Peter had died from the stroke, which I quickly quashed.
Recently one fandom was in a serious tizzy because of a rumor that was supposes to be gospel about what was going to happen to one of their beloved characters. They didn’t like it one bit and many swore that it would ruin the show. I know the actor in question and asked them about it. It was false but I couldn’t say anything because they told me in confidence. Eventually the rumor was proved false but a lot of people got upset over something that wasn’t real.
I know there are people out there who take great pride in stirring the pot and causing these Internet frenzies. These people do have no life and really need to get one.
Then there is what I call the wishful rumors. Started by people who wish that what they say would be true. I have a Doctor Who story about that one that went down a pretty twisted rabbit hole and still has repercussion in Dr. Who fandom to this day.
I think that news organizations that don’t verify before reporting need to change their name from news to speculation organizations because that is what they are doing. And verifications now even have to be checked because some of the sources used to verify can be suspect (ie: fandom rumors).
I am grateful to news organizations that act like news organizations rather than sensationalism and rumormongers.