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How can a journalist or a news consumer tell if a story is true or false? There are no exact rules, but the following clues may help indicate if a story or allegation is true.
First, does the story claim that vast, powerful, evil forces are secretly manipulating events? If so, this fits the profile of a conspiracy theory, which is rarely true, even though such theories have great appeal and are often widely believed. In reality, events usually have much less exciting explanations.
Second, is the story startlingly good, bad, amazing, horrifying, or otherwise seemingly “too good” or “too terrible” to be true? If so, it may be an “urban legend.” Urban legends, which often circulate by word of mouth, e-mail, or the Internet, are false claims that are widely believed because they put a common fear, hope, suspicion, or other emotion into story form.
For example, after the September 11 attacks, a story arose that someone had survived the World Trade Center collapse by “surfing” a piece of concrete from the 80th floor to the ground. Nothing so extraordinary occurred, but many initially believed this, out of desperate hope that some people trapped in the towers miraculously survived their collapse.
Third, be aware of widely repeated allegations that are false, but which many continue to believe. The AIDS virus was not invented in a laboratory. Americans do not adopt children from other countries to use them in organ transplants. Likewise, there are many exaggerated fears about depleted uranium, probably because people mistakenly associate it with weapons-grade uranium or fuel-grade uranium, which are much more dangerous substances.
Fourth, consider the source. Conspiracy theorists often circulate false or skewed information. Ideological extremists frequently spread false stories.
Fifth, research the claim further and, if you wish, ask us. We can’t respond to all requests for information, but if a request is reasonable and we have the time, we will do our best to provide accurate, authoritative information.
is the story startlingly good, bad, amazing, horrifying, or otherwise seemingly “too good” or “too terrible” to be true?
Originally posted by SportyMB
Well, I thought the article was good to go.
How did you find that article? Random find while searching the web?
Originally posted by deltaboy
pretty good article, able to help us remind ourselves to see the whole story and to look into it more carefully before accepting and not just accept wat is there.
also, hey Sporty do u post yer signature on Syrian Sister each day, i mean different quotes from her?
No, the government provides a handy link to spam all your friends in the event of a conspiracy theory outbreak.