Tuesday, February 21, 2006
In less than one hour I got phone calls, emails, and text messages on my cell phone warning me to avoid drinking or even using tap water because peasants in Egypt threw dead birds in the Nile River. You can't believe what happened at my workplace. People left work and started calling and text messaging everyone they knew to pass the message.
"It's a rumor". That was the first thing I said. To relax my colleague, I logged on news websites to find if they mentioned anything. They didn't. My colleague kept calling her parents and friends, I went to the loo!
We're a nation that is easily affected by rumors since truth is so hard to be found. The flow of information is always blocked either by the government or by the culture itself. This is why people believe anything.
A similar mega rumor was also going around the grapevine 2 weeks ago. I got zillions of text messages informing me of what thousands of Danes were planning to do on a Saturday evening. They were planning to burn the Quran in downtown Copenhagen.
I'm now thinking of making and circulating my own rumor: Birds in the air carry bird flu, don't breath for the coming half hour until Egypt's air force chase the birds away. How about that?