Something real, something not….

The internet is full of both the cumulative knowledge of humanity and its mindless dribble. More insidiously there is a large amount of mis-information that spans the entire gambits of the political spectrum, health and wellness, and conspiracy theories. Here a just a couple of examples of what is and what is not.

Image of man at laptop thinking.
Photo by: Andrea Picqadio

Something real:

Life expectancy falls in US, it would not appear that something like this would happen in a country like the United States, and someone may assume that the article is click bait.  However, the source that published the story immediately sites their source, which is the Centers for Disease Control.  Later in the article, US News also lists by name a professor who corroborates the claims by the other sources via an independent study.  


The source here is US News which is a well known publication that I am familiar with.


US News and World report was launched in 1948, Wikipedia lists an extensive numbers of sources validating its history and reputation.

Find Better Coverage

In the case of this article this specific subject was covered by numerous other media outlets that are well known and generally trusted sources.

Trace claims

US News is reporting on a report generated by the Centers for Disease Control, and the article directly links to their report.

Something fake:

Food Babe posted this image and claimed that TBHQ is a toxic preservative made from butane.  This while not being a full-fledged article, it was posted by a somewhat influential food blogger on social media.  The post went viral as it appears on the surface to be truthful, and this is aided by the actual chemical name of the substance in question (a tert-butyl moiety). Butyl is similar in name to Butane. And the posts author claimed (falsely) that the preservative is made from butane.


In this case the claim is bombastic and not from an actual media company but rather an influencer with a sizeable following.


This claim was specifically debunked by via several sources that are able to show that not only is the additive safe for humans but also that it is in fact not created from butane.

Find Better Coverage

Coverage on the case of whether or not TBHQ is safe for consumption is addressed by regulatory agencies sited in the article debunking this post they include both the FDA in the US and the EFSA in Europe.

Trace Claims

In this case the claim is directly from the author of the post so there is not a need to trace it farther back.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *