I don’t know how many messages I get every day from well-meaning friends – and family members! – who see something heart-warming in their mailbox and forward it along to everyone they can think of. I appreciate seeing a lot of them, some not so much, but before I forward anything like that I always check the most reliable source I have yet found to make sure they’re real before sending them on.
The Snopes web site at www.snopes.com is by far the most reliable source I’ve yet discovered for back-checking to find out if such-and-such a forwarded message is real or not. Some have turned out to be legitimate. Others started that way but morphed out of control over the years. But the bulk of the stuff that I get forwarded to me turns out to be just plain bogus.
Today I got one that was probably the greatest story I had seen in a long time. I so wanted it to be real, but I had to check. Unfortunately, it wasn’t. It wasn’t a hoax, just an article of fiction written for a magazine in 1998 and has since been treated as fact and forwarded along. Details are here for those who are interested.
If you read it, you’ll know why I wished it were true.
Anyway, the point is, PLEASE back-check anything you read before forwarding it along. Do your part to keep the volume of email traffic down as much as possible. Your mail provider will thank you. (Well, maybe not but you can give yourself a “warm feeling inside” by knowing you did the right thing.)