Friday, June 8, 2007

Think before you send!

After getting all those tons of emails which warned me about how my Orkut account or my YahooMail ID was just about to be canceled, or how I would be visited by the wrath of God if I didn't forward some Scandinavian child's plea for a gonad, I figured that this is most certainly an apt thing to put up on my blog. :)

From the guys who wrote the well-publicized book "The Hamster Revolution: How to Manage Your Email Before It Manages You", here's a short article that outlines 7 websites where you can quickly (trust me, it takes only 5 minutes!) check out the veracity of your email's contents before you send it out to every single living person whose email ID you happen to possess.

Enjoy, and hopefully, once the word gets around, I will never hear of another email which wants me to spam 10 of my friends to fulfill every wish I every dreamed...:)


General Scams and Hoaxes – “Snopes” focuses on email hoaxes. You can read carefully researched analyses of just about any popular email message floating around the web. Urban legends, political myths, folklore, and plain old misinformation are carefully taken to task by the team. Snopes is a grass roots effort by Barbara and David P. Mikkelson that is supported by some advertising revenue. – A commercial “portal” which features a search engine and a number of general channels like religion and business. Good, solid well-researched information. also has a helpful urban legends and folklore section. Just go to and search for ‘urban legends’. It’s a good alternative to Snopes. – Internet users can quickly and easily get information about eRumors, warnings, offers, requests for help, myths, hoaxes, virus warnings, and humorous or inspirational stories that are circulated by email.

Healthcare Info – A service of the National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health. Pre-formulated MEDLINE searches are included in MedlinePlus and give easy access to medical journal articles. MedlinePlus also has extensive information about drugs, an illustrated medical encyclopedia, interactive patient tutorials, and latest health news. Before you buy into the latest healthcare fad, experimental surgery, herbal miracle cure, or drug company claim – take a moment to surf this non-commercial government site. – Provides a very contemporary and comprehensive commercial site on health issues that is supported by sponsor revenues. The sponsors are unobtrusive and are listed as links at the bottom of the page. The information appears to be well-researched by medical professionals but keep in mind that you check with your doctor before making any major changes to your healthcare regimen.

Political Fact and Fiction

Note: Some political fact checking sites can have a political orientation. We recommend reading several of them to get a broader bi-partisan view of politics. – This site claims to be a non-partisan, nonprofit, "consumer advocate" for voters that aims to reduce the level of deception and confusion in U.S. politics. They monitor “TV ads, debates, speeches, interviews, and news releases.” They strive to provide an ethically and politically balanced view of the political world. – According to their website, CJR Daily is a real-time critique of journalism and a continuing discussion and analysis of where journalism is as a craft and a business, and where it's going. Operating under the auspices of the Columbia Journalism Review, the focus is on three areas: political journalism; the larger forces -- political, economic, technological, social, legal -- that affect journalism; and the business and financial press.

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