Updated: May 27
A rumor or rumour is "a tall tale of explanations of events circulating from person to person and pertaining to an object, event, or issue in public concern which is not always true." (Wikipedia)
Even after being not true. It spreads like fire in the forest. Well, it was ok when it was just some fake news but now it has become very destructive. These rumors are not just effecting people but now its killing people.
Rumors that have killed people.
False WhatsApp news about child-kidnapping killed people in India and Mexico.
Child-kidnapping rumor. Well, it was not only in India but also in Mexico. this below image shows a burning child-kidnapper of Mexico.
The fact is he died because of the rumor. I can go on with the example. It will not end.
Why rumors spread?
The reason for the spread of rumor is, Its too good to be true, Its exactly what we want to listen. People with little knowledge can break this chain of fake news.
Reasons for rumors in India.
Today, there is a lockdown in my country India because of coronavirus!
Do you know! Why there were attacks on doctors and cleaning staff in India?
We are getting news about attacks on doctors, cleaning staff, etc, by a group of people. I don't know what they are thinking and what they have been taught. But this is shameful. After interviewing with some people. I came to know that. They have been taught that there is no COVID-19 virus anywhere. Its all fake news! The prime minister is just spreading the rumor to capture one group of people. Some people also said that People are being captured and transmitted to the hospital. There, they are being injected with COVID-19 injections.
A person with a little knowledge. Can overcome this rumor. People are suspicious about the government and the hospitals and even the doctors. But they are trusting blindly on a WhatsApp message! Why?
Because they want to listen to it. They want it to be true. And the fake message is written and presented by someone trustworthy!
Whatever the reason might be. While doing simple research. Or asking a simple question with the sender. It can be solved.
Measures to stop the spread of a rumor.
No one is born literate.
Now, Any fake news spreader will be punished by law.
This is a nice step to prevent the spread of a rumor. But the better way is by spreading awareness about it to the public.
I know, India doesn't have that good literacy rate. But no one is born literate. They came to know after studying and observing their environment.
I know it's not easy to make understand your elders. Maybe because of ego. But they will understand the facts. Try to spread knowledge. Its free, No side-effect and the best part, It grows more as it spreads. Just like rumor!