No Roots

Bogus E-mail Messages

One of my major pet peeves is bogus e-mail spam. They are the body of factually inaccurate e-mails in circulation which broadly fall into the categories of funny, sappy or alarmist.

There are few people that find these things as annoying as I do, except, perhaps, those poor souls accused of writing the stuff.

I want people to know that I take care with my writing, and try to keep my standards high. But most of this "humour" on the Internet is just plain stupid. [...] One of the more embarrassing items making the internet/e-mail rounds is a sappy load of shit called "The Paradox of Our Time." The main problem I have with it is that as true as some of the expressed sentiments may be, who really gives a shit? Certainly not me.

George Carlin

Spotting this stuff is in fact very easy. Unless there is a link to an authentic source, it is almost guaranteed the information you get is inaccurate.

Typical inaccuracies include:

  • writing attributed to wrong author (Andy Rooney did NOT write In Praise of Older Women - in fact he said he doesn't even like older women; George Carlin did NOT write Hurricane Rules and would probably like a piece of the person who did)
  • factual inaccuracies mixed in with truth (Kevin Carter did NOT write that suicide note - warning: horrible photo)
  • just totally made up crap (no there is nobody placing needles infected with HIV in phone booths nor is there some serial killer slashing women's ankles at gas stations).

If it sounds unbelievable it is most likely bogus.

There's one other class of similar e-mail which involve some bizarre photo. Even photos can be faked so don't be so gullible. Nevertheless, even fake photos can be quite interesting. There are some great ones here.

If you ever get such an e-mail, please do not forward it to me before confirming its authenticity or you will get one of my faoming at the mouth e-mails back with the contents of this blog entry!

You can check at one of these two sites:

Or simply Google for it.

Labels: , , Furl digg Reddit TailRank Add to My Yahoo co.mments Wednesday, November 30, 2005


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