By now, I'm sure you've all heard about the rumor that the Indians are considering trading Cliff Lee. Except, they aren't. The original article, on CBSSPORTS.com, cited "sources." Here's the pertinent paragraphs:
But multiple officials familiar with the Indians said this week that they wouldn't be at all surprised to see Lee get traded if the Indians fall far out of the race, just as CC Sabathia was dealt away when Cleveland fell out of it last year.
"I think they'd love to trade him," one of the officials said.
Why would you trade a guy who went 22-3 and won a Cy Young? Simple. Because you don't think he can do it again.
"They might think this is the time to sell high on him," another official said.
So yeah, the article went from stand-alone rumor-mongering to full-fledge internet rumor in the matter of a day. And it had no basis to begin with. Shapiro even said so in a story by Paul Hoynes in the Plain Dealer, saying a trade is not on his radar right now.
What I think about the original story and all the blogs and papers that linked to it without noting that it was absolutely full of shit can be conveyed easily with this clip from the Colbert Report, where Stephen discusses congressman Bill Posey and his relationship with the rumor that Obama wasn't born in the United States.