Fake news spreading like a virus in Nambucca

With the dark spectre of an uncertain future looming large in our periphery, fear has been given legs.

So too have wild claims such as the one currently doing the rounds of organised supermarket looting by "bus loads of tourists".

That particular story has been spreading faster than coronavirus on local social media pages, and has been given credence by some mainstream news outlets.

The phenomenon is not just occurring here - there have been similar reports and subsequent panics in Mudgee, Ballarat, and various other regions.

So are bus loads full of shoppers coming to the Mid North Coast to ransack our supplies?

Not according to local supermarkets, who have made no reports to suggest this is the case.

A spokesperson for Woolworths said they "haven't heard of any reports or evidence to suggest that".

Reporters from our sister papers - the Mudgee Guardian and the Ballarat Courier - have also rung around every local store in their areas, and none have confirmed the rumours.

And in an age of ubiquitous mobile phone cameras, it does seem odd that noone has any credible photographic evidence to back up claims of it occurring in Kempsey, or Dorrigo ... or Orange, Bathurst, Deniliquin or the hundreds of other regional towns this has allegedly been happening.

To invoke a viral millennial phrase - pics or it didn't happen.

As one of our valued readers has said to us - what we need now more than ever is "compassion and unity". We agree wholeheartedly. We also think it is prudent in confusing times like these to avail yourself of information from trusted news sources, like your Guardian News.

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