The John Rhys-Davies Internet Rumor Experiment

image Rubber Chicken has posted an interesting account of their experiment in spreading rumors and misinformation via their internet. What they wanted to do was plant one seed of misinformation, and see how far it would spread. As it turned out, it spread quite far.

Their seed of misinformation was this: they made up a rumor that actor John Rhys-Davies, of Sliders fame, was going to provide the voice for General Grievous, the new CGI villain in Star Wars Episode III. They emailed this rumor to Ain't It Cool News, where it was promptly posted as a hot new piece of movie gossip. They then sat back and watched the rumor spread, which it quickly did. Other movie sites quickly picked up the news, and newspapers such as The Guardian even reported it: "Later reports listed IGN and The Guardian - yes, the god damned Guardian - as sources, which effectively meant the news progressively got more reliable. Barely 48 hours after the original announcement, many were already discussing Rhys-Davies' role as if it were confirmed."

Entertainment Pranks

Posted on Sun Mar 27, 2005


Bad Dates
Posted by Raoul  on  Sun Mar 27, 2005  at  07:05 PM
I'm sure this has NOTHING to do with people over concerning any Star Wars-related news...
Posted by Tom  on  Sun Mar 27, 2005  at  07:41 PM
"of Sliders fame"?

The man was in all 3 Lord of the Rings movies as a major character (he was Gimli) and he still gets listed as "of Sliders fame" these days?! No justice in this world...
Posted by Hioshi  on  Sun Mar 27, 2005  at  11:18 PM
point taken

From now on he will be known as The Dwarf
Posted by Beasjt  on  Mon Mar 28, 2005  at  06:44 AM
...He was also the voice of Treebeard the Ent.

Anywho...doesn't surprise me.
Posted by Maegan  in  Tampa, FL - USA  on  Mon Mar 28, 2005  at  07:32 AM
Ironic that "The Dwarf" was the tallest of the fellowship. He needed no scaled height tricks to appear much taller than all the hobbits.
Posted by Splarka  on  Mon Mar 28, 2005  at  01:38 PM
JR-D agreed to play the role of Ignatz, in the sequel to "Deep Llama", tentatively titled: "DL2: Down Under Llama". When asked if this role was beneath him, Rhys-Davies said: "BAH", and spit on the reporter
Posted by Raoul  on  Mon Mar 28, 2005  at  04:02 PM
Of sliders fame?

I remember him from Indiana Jones...he was in Raiders and Last Crusade. Maybe I'm just getting old.
Posted by Gentropy  on  Tue Mar 29, 2005  at  06:20 AM
...I think this is how CBS reported it's Bush story as well.
Posted by Chris  on  Sat Apr 02, 2005  at  12:34 PM
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