Dealing with Urban Legends and Internet Rumors

The Internet might be the most effective medium of urban legends. It is up to readers to evaluate the veracity of the information they read.
The Internet might be the most effective medium of urban legends. It is up to readers to evaluate the veracity of the information they read. | Source

Today, I heard a scary story. A friend told me that he wouldn't let his daughter attend her school's closing ceremony. A child has just been abducted. His eyes were taken out surgically. His kidney was gone. The missing organs were meant to be sold in the blackmarket, and my friend's afraid for his own daughter. Another young victim was abducted again. His organs were taken out. And guess what? The pictures of this poor victim were circulating on Facebook. Well, I think I heard that story years before. But this time, the version was a little different. The places were it took place were different. And there were no pictures before. I've read that somewhere inside my Yahoo! inbox.

Another story: When I was young, my mother won't take me to Robinson's mall. Why? Because the child of the mall's owner was a half man and half snake. He lived underground. And whenever a beautiful lady customer inside a fitting room caught his eye (the rooms were equipped with spycams ), he would push a button, the floor would open and the girl would be eaten alive. I admit I find this story amusing, kind of a fantasy. And the same story has been told elsewhere , on another mall . Is that coincidence? Or is it just one story made up by a creative writer then each place adapted it into its own?

These are just a couple of examples of urban legends. Urban legends are easy to spread. Even by a mere word of mouth, a sentence could go as far as to another continent. And that single sentence could get distorted easily. But now, technology has made information, whether true or false, spread even faster. Several years before, these were passed through chain emails or text messages. Now, as if those media weren’t enough, there came Facebook, Youtube, Twitter – you name it, making these false information spread like wildfire. Technology has made life easier, and also easier for false information to circulate. It is up to us to be responsible for what we read.

It’s not easy to determine whether the information we receive is true. A video or picture might even make an entirely made-up story believable. It's not unfamiliar to hear something like a famous celebrity died , or that boiling instant noodles inside their Styrofoam containers will make us sick . All of us are prone to being misinformed. And it might even get embarrassing when we share something to find out later that it's untrue.

When a message reaches you, don't just stop there. Do your research. URLs ending with .edu and .org are highly reliable. Look for something that might prove or contradict the message. Snopes.com is a good start. It contains archives of famous urban legends; evidences were laid out to prove whether something's real or not. So the bottom line here is, let's not believe in everything we hear or read. Research first before reacting. And through this we gain more knowledge and insight. In the end, it will be up to us to make an informed judgment and do the necessary actions.

© seriousnuts 2011. All rights reserved.

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Comments 8 comments

cheerfulnuts profile image

cheerfulnuts 5 years ago from Manila, Philippines

Nice hub, seriousnuts! Welcome to Hubpages! :>


Jeannieinabottle profile image

Jeannieinabottle 5 years ago from Baltimore, MD

Have you heard the one about the babysitter thinking a clown statue was in the livingroom with her all night, only to find out it was a crazy man actually dressed like clown standing there the whole time? I love urban legends. Great hubs!


seriousnuts profile image

seriousnuts 5 years ago from Philippines Author

Hi Cheerfulnuts! Thanks for inviting me here. And thanks for your comment! =)


seriousnuts profile image

seriousnuts 5 years ago from Philippines Author

Hi Jeannieinabottle! Nope, haven't heard of that. Sounds interesting, and creepy too. Haha! I love urban legends too, they never fail to amuse me. =)


Minnetonka Twin profile image

Minnetonka Twin 5 years ago from Minnesota

Yes, welcome to another great twin and writer. I can't wait to hear some twin stories. Their just in you waiting to come out. LOL

Great job on one of your first hubs.


seriousnuts profile image

seriousnuts 5 years ago from Philippines Author

Thanks Minnetonka Twin. Yes! I can't wait too for them to come out. Haha. They're still in progress. =)


Crobin28 profile image

Crobin28 5 years ago from Pelham, Alabama

I LOVE URBAN LEGENDS!! Although, as you said, many can easily be prooven wrong, they make for great entertainment. Why? Well because ALSO like you said, they spread like Wildfire and it torments the minds of people who aren't bright enough to do a little extra research before they beat it into their minds. And once it's in your mind, the fear will strike! I remember one particular one about a woman and her daughter who were chatting on a webcam. The woman then saw a dark shadow in the shape of a man pass behind her daughter. As if that's not creepy enough, the woman told her daughter who then went to check out the situation. The mother was terrified while her daughter left to assess the situation but thankfully she returned. She was in the middle of informing her mother that no one was in her house when an ice pick patruded through her torso! OK!!!! SO!!! I was young and I did have a webcam that I used to talk to friends and what not over Summer vacation. Everytime I was on it I couldn't help but to continuous check behind me!

After researching the Urban legend and finding that it wasn't true, I still had that little fear inside of me and still today it will NOT go away! But I know it's not true and it's still fun to pass the story along to others so they can experience the same fear I do! XD Is that bad?!? HAHA! Anyway! Voting you up! Great job!


seriousnuts profile image

seriousnuts 5 years ago from Philippines Author

LOL. I can't blame you for still having that little fear. Urban legends are untrue, but they still affect the people who hear them. I myself have this same kind of little fear when going inside a fitting room. Some stories are really creepy.. and I had to agree, it's fun to pass them along! So we really can't believe everything people say. Haha. Thanks for voting up.

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