Truth, falsity and myth in the Ivory Tower

From: Greg Fisher (
Sent: Monday, September 30, 2013 9:27 AM
To: Richard H. Brodhead, president, Duke University; Richard H. Brodhead, president, Duke University (via public affairs office); Irene Jasper, director, Student Lending, Duke University; Personal Finance@Duke, Duke University
Cc: Alex Rosenberg, Department of Philosophy, Duke University
Subject: credit score, employers, myth, falsity, truth, efficacy of a social media message, ivory tower

See this message and your response at

Your website states: “A poor credit score may mean having to make a large deposit in order to open an account with the electric company or to sign a new lease.  It could even mean the loss of job opportunities.”

What is the name of the person who wrote that?

Experian claims, “Creditors, landlords, and even some employers consider a person’s credit score before deciding whether they will approve a loan, lease an apartment, or hire an applicant.” However, Experian also states, “No, Experian’s business policy prevents the inclusion of credit scores with an employment report, at Experian called Employment Insight.”

Employers do not use credit scores. I looked into it. See a five-year account of false statements (including yours, now), in this bizarre and fascinating phenomenon, documented at Apparently, you have not noticed the pages behind the links above. During your social media chat with Experian, will you address the notion regarding credit scores in employment alleged on your websites?

What evidence proves that employers use credit scores? What prompted the statement in your document? I am attempting to track the myth to its original source. Who provided—or how you came about—the misinformation is valuable.

Today, please acknowledge receiving this message.

There are many false statements; the one mentioned above has serious consequences. I believe that you and Experian have the burden to prove that your statements are true. Neither of you have provided any evidence.

Greg Fisher
The Credit Scoring Site
Page A2
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

[next message]

Slapdash research

From: Greg Fisher []
Sent: Wednesday, September 25, 2013 1:18 PM
To: Tim Grant, reporter, personal finance, housing and banking, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Block Communications)
Subject: RE: credit score, employers, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, anonymity II

See this message and your response at

You still have not answered the questions.  I will reiterate.

You wrote

With the possible exception of your Social Security number, your credit score might be the most important number in your life.

It affects every area of personal finances as far as the interest rates paid on loans, premiums for insurance and in some cases whether or not someone qualifies to work in certain career fields.

I asked for your source regarding credit score use by employers. You replied: “Sorry for the very delayed response, but I’m been swamped with urgent assignments and projects. From what I understand based on the research I’ve done, a bankruptcy or a very low credit score can impact a person’s security clearance for certain government jobs.”

Then, I asked if you intended to use anonymous sources. I have not received your reply, and there is no correction at the bottom of the article. It is intact, and anybody reading it will be misinformed.

Now you write: “The importance of credit reports and credit scores has gone way beyond the original purpose of gauging the likelihood of someone repaying a loan. Insurance companies use them to determine who is a safe driver and employers use them to evaluate potential employees.”

Who are your sources?

What is unclear about my question from January of 2011?

The newspaper you write for, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, has not responded to a message I sent 24 hours ago. And, lest you or the people running your organization think that you operate in a vacuum, see your false words copied and republished elsewhere by Technology Marketing Corporation.

I am not putting up with it. Employers do not use credit scores. I looked into it. Tell your publisher, and reply today.

Greg Fisher
The Credit Scoring Site
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

Quicken Loans nonsense, and Gilbert’s bitterness about credit scores

Dan Gilbert is bitter.

He made some corrections, but he still has not completed his work.

[previous email exchange]

From: Greg Fisher []
Sent: Tuesday, September 10, 2013 3:29 PM
To: Bill Emerson, CEO, Quicken Loans; Bill Emerson, CEO, Quicken Loans (via L. Kreder); Bill Emerson, CEO, Quicken Loans (via Help address); Bill Emerson, CEO, Quicken Loans (via assistant’s address)
Cc: Dan Gilbert, Fathead; David Quilty, senior editor, Quizzle LLC; Todd Albery, Leader of the Webolution, Quizzle LLC
Subject: RE: Your horrible, recurring errors, follow III

Your website still states, falsely, “Don’t forget: Many employers also check credit scores, especially when you’re in the hiring process.”

That is nonsense. Employers do not use credit scores. I looked into it.

Who is your regulator?

Greg Fisher
The Credit Scoring Site
PO Box 342
Dayton, Ohio  45409-0342

False information spread by Time Warner/CNN

Jeff Bewkes, Time Warner

This is a civics lesson directed squarely at you. If a shadow audience reads it, that’s gravy.

See “Labor Day, 2013 – CNN and the myth about employers and credit scores.” In it, I make the point that your reports of American history and credit scores are factually incorrect. Your websites state that Mitch McConnell is the majority leader of the U.S. Senate. That is not true, and further, it has never been true. While a fine man, Senator McConnell (R-Ky.) is Minority Leader. You can see that plain fact on the Senate’s official history page, “Majority and Minority Leaders and Party Whips.”

You also state that employers use credit scores, and that is not true, either. That fact was a lot harder to prove (and took 5 years; proving that something is not is a lot harder than proving that something is) than the fact of the senator’s position, but there isn’t much debate about it now. If there is debate, your side loses. Hell, you even seem to argue with yourself, publishing, in 2011, “It’s important to note that employers can’t actually see your three-digit credit score,” and then, in 2013, “Insurance companies, landlords, and employers are increasingly checking credit  scores, too.”

Blame VantageScore if you want (actually, that would be a good thing–the more, the merrier), but the CEO of that relatively new gambit of the consumer reporting agencies doesn’t have his act together, either. You are birds of a feather: Too quick on the Publish button, and oblivious.

Despite the proof above (and your having been informed), your pages still make false claims. In addition to those listed on the Labor Day page, here are more examples of you stating Senator McConnell’s title inaccurately. Please, for the sake of the United States of America, stop it today. If you do nothing, this merciless berating will continue.

  1. DNC ad aims at ‘plotting’ by McConnell
  2. CNN’s GUT CHECK for March 14, 2013
  3. Repeal health care law? Forget about it
  4. SOTU Crib Sheet 3/3
  5. Reid Yanks Senate Contingency Plan as House Takes Lead in Debt Talks

And, on the following pages, you published the statement that employers use credit scores. Employers do not use credit scores. I looked into it. The first three stories are dated after April 24, 2008, the date that–within days of the other two–the third of the three main national consumer reporting agencies stated that they do not provide credit scores for employment purposes. The second three are dated prior to 2008. If, by some great miracle (or act of journalism), you come up with evidence or sources, please provide them today. Had you done so in the first place, we would not be here, now.

  1. MYB: Your credit score could prevent you from getting a job – Christine Romans explains” (2013)
  2. Employers are looking at candidates credit scores. Be wary.” (2010)
  3. Settling the credit score” (2008)
  4. How to ace your credit score” (2007)
  5. 8 credit score myths” (2005)
  6. Credit score myths” (2004)

There are other myths that need attention, but if this does not compel you to make corrections, there is a much bigger predicament. Not only is what you are doing wrong in terms of accuracy, it is wrong, ethically. Because of this fundamental problem, we don’t have a well-informed electorate (let-alone a well-informed legislature). Truth is in the balance.

Despite your mass-media megalomania and prolific uploading, there is still hope. But, your action in this moment will stand as a fact of history. Don’t let it slip away.

The propagation of this myth has serious consequences. Today, before you publish another word, make it stop.

No interviews.

Greg Fisher
The Credit Scoring Site ( – A bleak account
Page A2 ( – Media accuracy, errors and corrections

cc: Jeff Zucker, CNN
cc: Joseph A. Ripp, Time