How can a journalist or a news consumer tell if a story is true or false? There are no exact rules, but the following clues can help indicate if a story or allegation is true.
* Does the story fit the pattern of a major media outlet or government agency?
* Does the story fit the pattern of an “urban legend propogated by viral marketers?”
* Does the story contain an obviously bias revelation about a highly controversial issue?
* Is the source trustworthy?
* What does further research tell you about how power manipulates information?
also: countering viral marketing