Katie Couric's Notebook: Online Rumors

In 2005, a Wikipedia entry claimed that veteran journalist John Siegenthaler had been a suspect in President Kennedy's assassination.

Last month, comedian Bill Cosby was surprised to read that he had died.

And yesterday, Chief Justice John Roberts was the last to know...he resigned from the Supreme Court for personal reasons.

All of those stories are pure poppycock that proliferated online until they were proven false.

At this point in the notebook I could wag a finger at the Internet and extol the virtues of accuracy in reporting...but I like to keep you guessing.

Rebecca Jeschke of the Electronic Frontier Foundation pointed out to us...truth can rip through cyberspace as quickly as lies. Rumors like these are often squashed within minutes...as bloggers gnaw at new information like piranhas in a pool.

But that's little solace for the subject of the rumor, or a reader who simply wants to surf the Web...without getting pulled under by a rip tide of lies.

That's a page from my notebook.

I'm Katie Couric, CBS News.
  • Katie Couric

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