We had quite the wave of rumor sweep through Blazerland last night...a ton of excitement/angst/chatter over an anonymous message with supposed inside connections posted on a bulletin board somewhere online.
I make no judgment on the rumor itself. It may be true, it may not. But since this will hardly be the last time something like this happens--the offseason being as long as it is, rumors being plentiful, and all of us being so talkative online--I thought I'd take a moment to share my feelings on this PROCESS of spreading supposed inside information anonymously. And my take is pretty simple: I hate it.
The biggest reason I hate it is because 98.692% of these rumors turn out to be completely false and everybody gets in a tizzy over nothing. After about the first dozen you just get tired of it, you know? But I also hate it because in my view claiming and spreading unsubstantiated, anonymous inside information is a jerky thing to do, top to bottom. Whenever this happens one of the following is always true:
- Maybe the poster is just making it up wholesale to get attention, which makes you a jerk.
- Maybe the poster is an inside person spreading this information themselves. My question is, if you're going to do that why isn't your name and position included in the post? The answer: because you're not supposed to be doing that. When you signed a contract with the organization a bond of trust was supposedly established. Whether you're the janitor or the Assistant GM leaking that information before its time and in the wrong place violates that bond of trust which is the whole basis for you having access to that job (and the information) to begin with. And why are you breaking that bond? So you can get a cheap thrill and acclaim for your anonymous online self...acclaim for nothing but overhearing stuff and blabbing. There's no talent involved. Your only claim to fame is that someone was in a position to trust you and you're willing to take advantage of that. Guess what? In my book that makes you a jerk.
- Maybe the poster has legitimate connections and was told these things and immediately blabbed them everywhere. Perhaps they were told in complete confidence, which violates a personal trust, which makes you a jerk. Or maybe they were told in full knowledge that they'd spread it, which means that you are aiding and abetting person #2 above--promulgating encouraging, and creating worse consequences for their breach of ethics. This also makes you a jerk.
- The poster really has connections inside but doesn't completely breach trust with them. Instead (s)he just comes online and says, "Guess what guys? I heard something big is going down but I can't tell you what!" So you have given us no information. You have given us nothing substantial or useful to talk about. The only thing you're really conveying is the impression that you're just a wee bit more special than the rest of us because you know secret things. Ooooh! Look at you! This conversation isn't about any of us or the Blazers. It's about you showing off. Hmmmm...let's see... Yep! That makes you a jerk.
Of course this is just one man's opinion. If this kind of stuff is your cup of tea by all means indulge yourselves in the diaries. I only insist upon two things:
--Nobody starts this kind of crap at this site. If you have special, "inside" information that's going to rock the world but you can't share it all, can't put a name to the source, and can't even put your own, real name on it...share it someplace else. If the rumor is already flying around the world there's not much we can do about it and it probably can be discussed in the diaries if you wish (as happened last night) but at least it doesn't start here.
--If you talk about such things in the diaries you must CLEARLY label them as rumors both in the title and the body of your text. Real, reported, accredited news often does get shared in diaries before it makes the main page because it breaks when I'm away from the computer. Those lines should not be blurred. Nobody should click on a diary expecting to hear something important and real and then go, "Oh...it's one of those." Eventually people will stop clicking.
As for me, you won't see me talking about these kind of things much, nor encouraging them, let alone getting excited about them. To me they're not worth the virtual ink they're typed with. Some may say they add stimulation and create conversation but you know what? We get through 160-odd days of the long, long offseason every year and still find interesting, legitimate, and real things to talk about every...damn...day. And judging by the comments we're doing alright. The day I need to take the cheap way out either by violating someone's trust or by lying and pretending like I did in order to create conversation and draw attention to myself is the day I should quit public discourse. It means by my own admission my opinions, thoughts, and words aren't interesting or worth reading anymore.