In a strange twist of irony, I’m going to tell you that repeating something doesn’t make it true by pointing you to a 2006 post I wrote about Repetition.

It also appears that I think about this topic around holidays, too… but that’s irrelevant.  The real reason I find this important is the recent internet slowdown caused by the massive use of social media tools to report Michael Jackson’s death about 30 minutes before he actually died.  It wasn’t important that he was dead or alive, it was important for someone to be the first to report it (this happened again in New Zealand later that day with respects to Jeff Goldblum – thankfully, he’s alive).  And while Jackson eventually did die, it wasn’t because the messengers made it true.  The actual result was that people copied the message over and over, spreading false information.  Like most rumors, it traveled like wildfire.  Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, the blogosphere, Google, Yahoo!, etc… each experienced massive delays.

Moral of the story: remove repetitious language from your agreements.  Oh, and don’t twitter as truth what you don’t really know to be true.

Have a Happy Fourth of July (whether it’s your Independence Day or not)!

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