Traditional, mainstream media outlets often are critical of blogs and websites for posting unsubstantiated information, which makes its rounds on the Internet and can be regarded as fact by its readers. But mainstream media doesn’t help its case when it elevates the status of such internet rumors. That’s what NBC’s Brian Williams did in last week’s Nevada debate when he asked Barack Obama to respond to Internet rumors that he is Muslim, that he held the Koran when he took his oath of office and that he does not recite the Pledge of Allegiance.
Now with the Green Bay Packers and the New York Giants about to play for the NFC championship, a “Packer Prayer” based on the Our Father is circulating on the Internet. Not only is the Associated Press making the text of the prayer available to its member news organizations, the wire service also has written a story about the “prayer” and the clergy’s reactions to it.