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Monday, January 23, 2006

O M Gosh: Japanese Jellyfish mutate into land monsters! Should I be concerned?

It's widely known that most factual news data wrote in blogs is biased by opinion. Some of it is also partly, if not completely, only rumor / speculation. In this blog about jellyfish in Japan, the article alone seems credible, but the commentary which follows is nothiong more than a gossip columb. Albeit, it's gossip and speculation that happens to be EXTREMELY humorous, especially when attatched to such a serious and forboding article. The goofy comments are obviously not meant to be taken seriously, but rather intended to provide comic relief.

The comments assert that giant jellyfish are aliens, are sent by other countries to attack Japan, and will eventually morph into land traveling creatures that terrorize citizens. So, see what I mean? Rebecca Blood in chapter one of her book "The Weblog Handbook" states that " A weblogger's commentary may provide insight into current events and may provoke the reader to more fully consider," his or her "own point of view." I agree; but, I argue that the opposite is also true. Comments can also mash, mangle and destroy credibility, turning readers to oppose the view of an author they otherwise would have trusted - whether or not that author is credible.

According to Blood, it's all too true that "weblogs encourage evaluation." And, a link takes the reader's super evaluation power one step further, beyond what it would have been without the link. Meaning, that the reader doesn't need to take my word for it. They can read the blog for themself. And who knows?. . . . someone out there might actally decide to believe those crazy comments. That would be a mistake, but at least they'd be making that mistake on their own.

p.s., intentionally false and humorous comments such as those on the jellyfish are harmless (since they are not designed to make the reader interpret them as authentic), but intentionally false comments that ARE meant to be believed, are unethical, and should never be put to practice.

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