Fact Check dubious claims in forwarded emails instantly, with LazyTruth

Do you get forwarded emails from friends and family that often contain half-truths, are riddled with erroneous ‘facts’ and other mythical information? What if you could weed these out instantly, but more importantly, discover the actual truth about the subjects within? If so, you will want to check out LazyTruth, a FREE software that provides a way for you to validate (or refute) information in forwarded emails, without leaving your inbox.

We’ve all gotten them. Emails that contain supposed facts or statements that are spurious at best. Often they are forwarded from someone else we know, usually a friend or family member, that wants to have a discourse on the subject within. Whether they want to discuss it or they just want you to know about it, the bottom line with these kinds of emails is that you want to know the truth of the matter. It might be a campaign letter for a politician’s movement on a position. Scams, rumor mills, fraud attempts to buy or sell condos, all of these can fall into your inbox and you don’t know how true or valid they may be when they do. It may be a statement of ‘news’ breaking on a subject you care about, or it may just be a interesting factoid or something that you’ve been arguing over for some time. In any case, it happens, and when it does, we have to go searching around the net to find corroboration or support to damn or prove the facts within. Chain letters are the same way.

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All of these kinds of emails can be dealt with simply by one single program that will install as a Chrome extension for convenience. It’s called LazyTruth and what it does is simple but powerful in the manner of saving time and answering queries about the facts within email. LazyTruth will install a button at the bottom of any forwarded email in your Gmail box. The button will just say “LazyTruth” and when pressed it will access the data available on any specific email and offer you further information about the validity and origin of the contents. There’s even a button to test the program and show you what it does by having LazyTruth send you an email as a forward, once you install it. All of this happens within the email box itself so you don’t have to open a new tab or search bar at all, either.

This tool is one of those great examples of someone actually thinking about what a good extension would be before running off at the keyboard and producing a useless one. While I did find that the LazyTruth button didn’t always have any information for me on any given email, it does offer you a way to upload information on that particular email to their server so that it can be researched and answered appropriately by others in the future. This kind of social network based expansion of the data they offer is a proven method, as Wikipedia shows, but the difference is that the answers given by LazyTruth are researched and verified before being published through the program.

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Overall, I was pleased with LazyTruth because, while it is still growing and gathering data, it already offers a neat and orderly way to quickly and easily confirm or deny information on those pesky forwards without covering my screen in ads, setting off on a separate search quest, or (most importantly) costing me any money. Until next time, my friends.

  • Get the LazyTruth Chrome extension here.

 
 
 
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Feb 24, 2013
B.C. Tietjens
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  • Toni

    Truth isn’t the same as facts. Often the facts are correct, but only ‘facts’ which support the statement of the email-sender, will be used. So, what this can lead to is a ‘I will slap you around the ears with the facts’ kind of e-mail discussion. This can be fun if the discussion is harmless, and for fun. It can be dangerous when you have a real dispute. In the last case, ask yourself: does it really matter if the facts are hundred procent ‘correct’? What do I really want to say?
    I would recommend to use this program with common sense. The idea is nice though.

    • Samer Kurdi

      Toni: you make very good points. Thanks for your input!