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Top sources of misinformation

9th June 2014


You can find out anything you want to on the internet. It is both a source of information and misinformation.

As PR people our supposed raison d'etre is to provide information, or if you're listening to @peston, misinformation.

But other than PR people – what are your top sources of misinformation? Here's mine:

1. Your friends
Especially the best educated ones. It is always the people who are most confident of their pronouncements who are the most persuasive, but don’t be fooled. Even if your best friend is an Oxbridge don, check the facts before you pass on their information.

2. Company websites
Several times I have quoted information from my client websites in press releases, only to be hauled over the coals later on for giving out wrong facts and figures. Now I have learnt to double-check any figures with the clients personally before I quote them.

3. The Daily Mail
Obviously.

4. Facebook
Most people I meet have a Facebook profile personality that is completely at odds with their real personality.

5. Twitter
A great place for finding out news before it gets into the mainstream media. A shame so much of it isn’t true.

6. You will have noticed that I have not mentioned Wikipedia here
The issue with Wikipedia is that it gets most things right, so you end up trusting it. Then when it is wrong you end up getting bitten in the arse!



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