Monday, May 18, 2009

Sometimes I feel like research on the internet is like reading National Enquirer. Someone sends something to your in-box about some cool new thing or most likely some warning of what not to do, have, eat, say...fill in the blank. At first you think, "Wow, I didn't know that...hmmm...will have to be more careful about ______." 

It's kind of like walking past the "newspaper" (that is what one of my grandmothers used to call the N.E. If you questioned something wacky that she said, she would look at you like you didn't know a whole lot and say, "Of course it's true, I read it in the newspaper."). You know that the stories in the "newspaper" are not true or real (perhaps based on a real word that may have been uttered with in a mile of said information that is being touted), but something makes you look and even quickly wonder if it could be possible. The next thing you know you are at a party (never an empty cup in hand) and you proclaim some far out truth...that you know to be true...cuz you saw it in the "newspaper".

Same thing happens with the e-mails claiming your left arm will fall off if you eat green veggies grown in soil made from the organic compost that came from the pharmaceutical plant in Alaska. After you read it you are a little freaked out and you want all your friends to be freaked out too...OK maybe you just want to make sure they don't lose their left you hit forward before your brain has had the chance to send out the "this is absurd...snicker and hit delete" message. In the case that you get the message and don't hit forward cuz you think maybe you need to check it out a bit first, beware of the internet. I guarantee that if you search for "green veggies cause missing arms in Alaska" you will find just as many sites that confirm the email as sites that don't say anything, but just make a laughing sound when you enter them.

So while the internet can offer a wealth of information, I caution you not to believe everything you read. Did you know that the name wikipedia came from the two words wicked and encyclopedia? Anyone can create (or change existing) entires with little or no knowledge of the subject at hand and often do so to create mayhem in the world. Believe me, it's true...I read it online.

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