what does your browser say about you?

web browsers

Internet Explorer says you’re a novice PC user or an experienced PC user who can’t or isn’t willing to experiment or upgrade. Firefox has gone almost mainstream mainly because IE holes have been published in mainstream media over the last few years. There’s different types of Firefox users… those who update, those who don’t. Chrome is the browser of choice for the cool kids or the average IT literate but non developer person…

Solid Research

I’m basing all of that on my own solid research… which is exactly what ApTiquant did when they published a report claiming users of Internet Explorer had a lower IQ than non Internet Explorer users. Whilst that is probably may be the case, their research, their website and their entire ‘organisation’ was just one big elaborate hoax which happened to get massive amount of coverage from big reputable news sites like BBC, CNN & Forbes.

Wikipedia Says

This is a good example of how easy it is to con people. A decent looking website and some clever papering over of cracks means some of the world’s biggest news sites will fall over themselves trying to be the first to publish fake research. It’s the same story with wikipedia… if wikipedia says someone was born in 1980, they were born in 1980, end of discussion. That’s how much we rely on information to be correct… information which has been uploaded by complete strangers.

Of course if you’re a journalist there’s certain hoops you have to go through before you can publish stuff. Making sure reports /research / references are from reputable sources should be one, but the problem is if one big gun i.e. BBC publishes this type of story then laziness creeps in… “ah sure if the BBC covered it, it’s obviously true”. Don’t get me wrong, i do the same… everyone likes a shortcut. Maybe this wasn’t all a hoax and i am in fact reporting false information…. maybe the research does exist…. who knows…

Are you dead yet?

It’s a similar situation on twitter. Plenty of famous people die every day on twitter… or at least that’s the rumour. All it takes is one semi-reliable person to go nuts or play a practical joke and mainstream media won’t know how to react… because they can’t sense tone properly from social media or get to original sources quick enough. Anyway, this is all a great indication of just how much you can trust news sites. A lot of the major players have been left with egg on their faces and that’s what they get for trying to battle with each other against the clock.

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