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Too bad to check

In response to Why Hoaxes Work:

What’s interesting about this latest rash of “receipt hoaxes” is how easily they were debunked.  It took fairly minimal investigative effort to find the accused bigots and get their side of the story… complete with documentation that proved they were telling the truth.  In the most recent example, it was the work of minutes to prove that a hefty tip was indeed included on the credit card receipt.

But the stories were blasted into media orbit without even cursory fact-checking, and very little skepticism.  Partly it’s because of the media’s biases – they badly wanted to run stories like this – and partly because the hoaxers were able to use social media to build up their own buzz.  I’d wager some of the reporters who blew these stories would tell you they just had to run with something before due diligence could be completed, because the stories were already Facebook phenomena.  Of course, they never show that sort of eagerness to get out in front a non-liberal social media sensation.

What an amazing contrast with the simultaneous effort by liberal bloggers and compliant mainstream reporters to literally wish the Knockout Game out of existence.  Here you’ve got a documented phenomenon that’s been going on for years, but a couple of lefty writers wrote blog posts in which they asserted – based on nothing except their own ideological convictions – that it couldn’t possibly be happening, because black youth cannot possibly commit hate crimes.  And this was taken seriously by media organizations that knew better, because their own papers had recently reported Knockout Game attacks!  But they still managed to find a bit of premium coverage space for the people who pulled “debunking” theories out of their hats.

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