Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Those Pesky Forwarded E-mails

I recently received a forwarded political e-mail from my aunt. The fact-check websites weigh in: hit delete without reading.


So PolitiFact has put together this handy guide to chain e-mails and other viral messages. Hide it under the green bean casserole and you can pull it out if your uncle brings up the chain e-mails...PolitiFact has checked 131 claims from e-mails and rated more than three-fourths of them False or Pants of Fire. Only 4 percent of the claims have earned a True...The e-mails, heavy on exclamation points and ALL-CAPITAL LETTERS, are typically sent by conservatives who dislike Obama.


We’ve long warned our readers to make good use of the delete key when emails spreading sketchy claims pop up in their inboxes. But we’ve found that old viral emails, unfortunately, never die — and new ones spread like a highly contagious disease.

These overwhelmingly anonymous messages are, by and large, bogus. Many not only twist the facts but also peddle pure fabrications, urging recipients to forward these “shocking” revelations to all their friends. And despite all good common sense, people do pass along these malicious attempts to deceive, often in the same amount of time it would take to check their tenuous hold on veracity.

Ever since the 2008 presidential election, we’ve seen a healthy dose of viral emails that bash the president. We find as the vitriol level rises, so, too, does the egregiousness of the false claims.

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