Don’t you hear that a lot, even now, years after Wikipedia, Google, Yahoo, and other fine service Internet websites? “Well, you know, you can’t trust what you read on the Internet.” Yeah, like you can trust what you read in the papers, see on the TV, hear on the radio!
Thanks to http://www.howmuchfish.com/ for the picture!
Years ago, our sister, who was in college at the time, asked us, “How do you know all that stuff?” as we held forth on matters political and economical. We explained that we read news magazines, listened to several radio stations, and read many newspapers.
We think she disblieved us, because what we were saying was at odds with what she was learning. We were living in Europe at the time and had many European friends, including many who had escaped from behind the Iron Curtain. We were there when the Berlin Wall went up; we were there when Peter Fechter was killed trying to get into Western Europe.
So our opinions were not from reading, not theories from cloistered professors, but from real life. What does this have to do with the Internet and investing?
Just this – to get a clue about the truth, you must sift through as much information as you can find.
Here’s a non-political, non-financial example. Had dinner tonight with our brother, who is a talented chef. He had selected swordfish steaks. We started talking about health and nutrition and that led to a question: does swordfish steak have omega-3 fatty oils?
Like all modern people, we rushed to Google to find out. Imagine our surprise when we saw headlines proclaiming variously: Yes, No and Maybe. Also, insisting it’s not good for you. Google it yourself: “DHA and Swordfish.”
What to do? What about a real world test? Dear Brother grilled outside on the back deck while he prepared a risotto which included vegetables I had brought from my garden: tomatoes and fresh corn. The first bite of fish revealed the truth: Yes! The flesh was firm, yet tender and juicy. The Omega-3 oils were practically oozing out of the steak.
We had a brief discussion about whether time of year the fish was caught may have affected the oil-content, since it does in tuna, but the conversation died down as we busily stuffed ourselves with what was clearly a healthful and delicious dinner.
Moral to this story: Sometimes you just have to go with your instincts.