/ Jimmy's Corner: And rumors never stop!!!

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Tuesday, February 21, 2006 

And rumors never stop!!!

In college this morning I got a SMS: "Don't drink water because farmers threw their infected birds in the Nile". Minutes later, a phone call:
Caller: Hey, did you hear the news?
Me: No I am in class...
Caller: The Egyptian TV warned people of drinking water because it is infected with the HIV bird flu virus.
Me: Water is infected with bird flu virus?
Caller: Yeah
Me: Then it is water flu not bird flu...
Caller: C'mon I am not joking, it is true, farmers threw their chicken and birds into the river, the virus is in the Nile.
Me: So what?
Caller: I don't know, just keep off drinking water for now. Or buy mineral water bottles, that would be safer.
Me: Thanks for the advice.. Bye 4 now!

Just after the phone call I switched off my mobile to not to receive any of these warnings again. But rumors never stop...! The whole class is talking, receiving SMSs, phone calls, and making phone calls... the keyword is "Don't drink water!"

Just as I get back home I received this:
"هام جدا جدا جدا... أعلن التلفزيون المصري وشركات مياه الشرب بيانا مفادة التنبية التالي: لاتشرب مياه الحنفيات أو تستخدمها فهي ملوثة بفيروس أنفلونزا الطيور المميت. مررها عسى تنق> حياة أنسان"
"Very very very Important: The Egyptian TV and WATER COMPANIES announced a statement with this warning: Do not drink water or use it because it is polluted with the deadly bird flu virus. Pass it, it may save a human beings life".

To be honest I received 10 of these messages not just this one. Everyone forwarding it to all they have on their contact list.

An hour later, the Minister of Information and Media in Egypt gives a statement that it is all rumors and that Ministry of Water Sources, Ministry of Information and Media and the WHO (World Health organization) assure that bird flu virus never exists in the Nile water and the Nile is absolutely pure. But again rumors never stop!!!

Cars room Cairo's streets with mics warning people of using or drinking water...

Can you see how rumors spread so quickly in the Egyptian society?? Can you imagine how many SMSs, emails, phone calls and announcements were used?? Everybody plays the role of Mr. Savior and acts like it is his duty to save the lives of others who do not know, although this Mr. Savior knows nothing himself and in reality he is just Mr. Loudspeaker that keeps voicing loud what he is told. No one thinks, no one tries to search for the truth, no one tries to make sure... Everybody runs to a ready made conclusion and acts upon it.

And till we learn to how investigate the truth before getting involving ourselves into spreading rumors that do nothing but more harm to us, rumors will never stop.

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