Monday, December 8, 2008

Do you believe a Chinese woman really lost her hearing from a passionate kiss?

According to this breathless story, a woman lost her hearing from kissing too passionately.

A young woman has partially lost her hearing after her boyfriend ruptured her eardrum during an excessively passionate kiss.

The twentysomething woman was taken to hospital in the Chinese city of Zhuhai, in southern Guangdong province, completely deaf in her left ear after the smooch.

'The kiss reduced pressure in the mouth, pulled the eardrum out and caused the breakdown of the ear,' a medic called Dr Li told state newspaper The China Daily.

The doctor said the woman's hearing would return to normal within two or three months.

'While kissing is normally very safe, doctors advise people to proceed with caution,' the newspaper added.

That's the entire story, which can also be found here, here, here, and here. (This one adds the rather sinister sentence, "The incident prompted newspapers to dispense kissing safety advice." The authorities in China really want to control everything, don't they?) And here.

Every version is the same, with very little detail given. The woman's name isn't revealed, and the medical quote is from "a medic called Dr Li." We then get a short, hectoring quote from a Chinese newspaper about proper kissing etiquette.

I do not believe this story. It is just as true as this one.

Why oh why oh why do news organizations just blindly pass along this bogus information as "news"? Is it because of that great, irresistible headline "Kiss of Deaf" that so many of them used? That's part of it, sure. I mean, it's a great pun, and so what if you're just advancing a totalitarian attempt to control peoples' lives by demonizing a common activity?


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