Rumor Management 101

Rumor is a common word used to describe a widely-disseminated information or piece of fictitious information. According to Webster’s dictionary, a rumor is a report, story, or speculation that spreads from person to person. The word has two distinct types, and one of these is a false or untrue rumor. While a false rumors is often spread by people who are anxious about something, a true speculative rumbling of information is more likely to be passed around by anxious individuals.


In order to identify a rumor, it should have a minimum number of statements, and it should have been in circulation for at least two days. To identify a rumor, its source should be clear, although it may be anonymous. The diffusion of a rumor bomb is quick, and its sources can profit from it. In highly-developed electronic-mediated societies, rumors can spread quickly, so it is crucial to recognize its characteristics and to manage them well.

In political campaigns, the creation of a rumor bomb is a tactic used to transfer public uncertainty from an opponent to a party. The source of the rumor can be partisan or anonymous, and anyone can profit from its spreading. In a highly developed electronic mediated society, a rumor bomb can spread very fast. In the past, the word rumor meant “news” or “untrue” in the context of political debate.

As a journalist, it is crucial to avoid the use of a false equivalency and a “both sides” approach. A false equivalency or a “both-sides” mentality is not appropriate and is only useful in some circumstances. In other situations, a conspiracy theorist or rumor monger should get equal play in the news. For instance, a Times magazine article reported that the L.A. Bowl was cancelled, which does not make any sense.

There are three key elements in managing rumors. First, people who are anxious are more likely to make rumors. They are more likely to make up their own rumor than people who are confident about their own opinions. In addition, a rumor’s emergence is accelerated by ambiguity and a lack of information. This makes it difficult for the source to control the spread of a rumor.

To study a rumor, the authors first studied the dynamics of a BITnet discussion. Participants were required to post a minimum of five statements and two days to complete the analysis. They coded the statements in terms of apprehension, fear, and uncertainty, and used statistical methods to analyze BITnet discussions. After two weeks, a four-stage pattern emerged. Hence, a rumor is a distorted version of information and is difficult to control.

A rumor is a story that has not been verified and is believed to be false. Its origins are in the Latin word rumorem, and its meaning is a “story that is circulated in a community”. A rumor can be either true or false. The definition of a supposition is not a fact. A rumor can be true or false. It can also be a “story” that has not been confirmed.