Well, here is a perfect example of how low someone can go.
It's a short article so I'll quote the whole thing, from Yahoo news:
Child Run Over Using Wheeled Shoes
Wednesday January 31, 04:31 AM
A 12-year-old boy is seriously ill in hospital after being knocked down by a car as he crossed the road wearing a pair of Heelys. The boy was hit by a car in Seaford, East Sussex, on Sunday. Police said he was wearing a pair of the fashionable Heelys, which are trainers with wheels.
The shoes have a single or double wheel in the heel that allows the wearer to go from walking to rolling simply by shifting their weight to their heels.
A Sussex Police spokesman said: "The 12-year-old boy remains in hospital in a serious condition. We can confirm that he was wearing what are known as Heelys.
"An investigation into the circumstances is taking place. No charges have been made."
Consider the repeated mention of the shoes this chid was wearing. Over and over, we are told he was wearing Heelys when he was hit. Most of the article is about the shoes. Yet there is nothing to suggest that the shoes were in any way responsible for the accident. Maybe the driver was going too fast. Maybe the child didn't look before crossing. Maybe it was just an accident. If the shoes were in any way responsible, that would have been stated very clearly. It is therefore reasonably safe to assume they were not.
Watch for a massive backlash from this against these new shoes. People are simple beasts, really, and the news reporters know it. This repeated mention of the shoes is meant to imply that these shoes are dangerous. It's news-hype at its lowest, using a tragic accident to crank up a vendetta against a shoemaker. The reporter will no doubt be paid well for this piece of psychological manipulation.
Will it work? It's the same trick stage magicians use to force a random audience member to pick a particular number. They mention the number over and over throughout the act, so no matter who they select, that number will be the first one in the volunteer's mind. It works with playing cards (keep using the words 'ace' and 'clubs' in unrelated conversation for a while, then ask someone to name the first playing card that comes into their heads. In fact, you think of one now). It works with absolutely anything.
So yes, it will work. There will be an outcry. Parents will ban their children from wearing these shoes. Sales will fall to zero, the inventor will end up broke. And all to further the career of a low-life reporter with no real news to report.
It's sickening how easily the masses can be manipulated. Free will? An illusion that works as long as you don't realise you're being told what to think. The general population can be convinced of absolutely anything using these techniques, and it happens far more often than you think. It's not just stage magicians and reporters who use tricks like this. Politicians are good at it too. So are conspiracy theorists, and the darker, seedier cults. Keep asserting what you want people to think and they'll think it. Link it with something shocking, like a child run over by a car, and you can get your message accepted in as few words as the article above uses.
Don't just scan news stories. Read them. Look at what they actually say, instead of what they imply. You might be surprised.
I haven't tried these shoes. I don't want to risk the danger of looking like a total idiot on the street.