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Interactive video lesson plan for: How to Spread a Rumor

Activity overview:

Nutella Bread Recipe:

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Got some information you want to circulate quickly and extensively? Learn what it takes to get people to pass it along.

Step 1:
Keep it simple. Research shows that rumors are more likely to spread if they are uncomplicated.

Keep the cruelty in check. Remember that rumors have the potential to ruin reputations.

Step 2:
Include a vivid detail that is easy to envision, which helps plant the story in people's minds, as well as making it easier to believe.

Step 3:
Make sure the story is difficult to disprove, so a little fact checking doesn't stop it in its tracks.

Step 4:
Make it shocking, but feasible. Rumors that spread quickly are bizarre enough to be titillating, but not so outlandish as to be unbelievable.

A rumor that preys on a specific fear is more likely to be passed on.

Step 5:
Give it a "testable credential" -- a detail that can be proven, even if it doesn't prove the story itself.

Step 6:
Get the ball rolling by telling it to someone gullible. Extra points if they also have a big mouth.

Step 7:
Keep the story alive by repeating it often. Research shows that the more we hear a rumor, the more we'll believe it -- even if we're being told it's false!

Did You Know?
Researchers have found that workplace rumors are about 95 percent accurate.

Tagged under: spread,rumors,spreading,gossip,secret,internet,school,pass,story,lie

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