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Does technology cause news to spread TOO fast?

Posted by: | October 3, 2011 | No Comment |
PERUGIA, ITALY - NOVEMBER 24:  Amanda Knox spe...

Image by Getty Images via @daylife

With social media sites like Facebook and Twitter, news and gossip can spread like wildfire. Sometimes, it moves a little TOO fast.

Word of mouth has been one of the most popular forms of passing news along since language arrived with homo sapiens. People would gather to learn the news of the day/week/month/year. Without the written word, however, the news was slow-moving. It could take years for one country to learn of happenings in another.

As technology changed, so did the ways in which news traveled. Stone tablets where words were etched turned to paper where words were printed. Words that were printed gave way to television and radio. And now, we have the Internet. Within seconds, news can travel across the entire world. But what happens when that news is spread a little too fast?

British tabloid newspaper, The Daily Mail has answered that question for us; mud all over their face.

If you don’t know who Amanda Knox is, you’ve probably been living under a rock. She is an American who was in Italy studying abroad. She was found guilty of killing her British roommate, but maintained her innocence throughout. On Monday, the verdict was read on her appeal and Twitter was abuzz with activity.

Since I did not understand Italian, the live feed did not mean much to me, so I was looking to Twitter to know whether her tears were of joy or sorrow. Half of the posts were saying she was found guilty, but there was still no answer. Then there was The Daily Mail.

The online version of the British tabloid jumped the gun, posting a pre-written story. Only, they posted the wrong one.

So how does a mistake like that get covered up? It was taken down immediately, but by then, it had gone viral.


Image from LunaticOutpost.com




Maybe the speed in which we can receive our news has finally surpassed us.

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