Now the rumours have come to China too:
“BBC announcement: radiation to hit Shanghai. Local authorities are issuing a warning and telling people to stay inside if it rains of if it’s windy outside.”
Text messages like this spread like a bush fire yesterday, causing not only confusion, but also some honest fear. Because what if it’s true?
Some hours later, however, we established that it was a scam.
It was exactly the same when I lived in London in 2001. I landed in London on the very same time as the plane hit the World Trade Centre, namely on September 11. The world, including London, was in shock. As the city slowly returned to normal, people started telling each other of warnings that they had gotten from “anonymous, Taliban looking men.”
-I went to the hairdresser and the guy who did my hair was from Afghanistan and he told me that I seemed like a nice girl and that I should avoid Piccadilly Circus on October 11!!
Do you think we were scared?!
However, when the third person came with a similar, yet somehow different story, it wasn’t that scary anymore.
As for text message scares/rumours in China –I’m not too worried, although I have to admit that a part of me has some concern. Not so much for what’s going to happen, but because you never know if the real information will get out over here, or if it will be censored, in an attempt to keep a “calm, harmonious society.”