From Jess’ assembly today on rumour and gossip…
One day, a student came up to the great philosopher. “Socrates, I have just heard some news about one of your friends.” he excitedly exclaimed.
“Before you tell me this news, we need to make sure that it passes the triple filter test,” responded Socrates.
“What’s the triple filter test?” the man asked.
“The first test is that of truth. Tell me, do you know that what you’re going to tell me is absolutely true?” asked Socrates.
After thinking for a moment, the man said, “I heard this news from someone else, so I’m not 100% sure if it’s true.”
“The second test is that of goodness,” Socrates continued, “Is what you’re about to tell me something good?”
“No, actually it’s the opposite…”
Socrates interrupted the man, “So what you’re going to tell me is neither true, nor good?”
The man was slightly embarrassed and shrugged his shoulders.
Socrates continued, “There is one final test which is usefulness. Is what you’re about to tell me going to be useful?”
“Probably not,” the man replied.
“Well, if you’re going to tell me something that’s not true, good or useful, then why tell me at all?” responded the philosopher.
The internet appears to be split on whether the original source was Socrates or some other wise bod.