Thursday, 3 December 2009

Ethical Dilemma: Blogosphere Honesty

Most Bloggers are highly opinionated. [I guess I'm part of that equation, too! ] We can be sure Tiger Woods recently has been the target of all kinds of allegations and accusations in the Blogosphere. And since it's a free society, honesty, facts, and truth have little to do with it!

Now let's get into an ethical conflict.

Hypothetical scenario:

Let's say a patient is taking "statin" cholesterol medication and is paying a lot of money. [Maybe in Canada this is not the case, but just hang on anyway!]

He then discovers that Niacin instead might do the trick. He then blogs

"Statins are a rip-off! The pharmaceuticals are out to get us! Vitamin B3 does just as well"

OK is this sloppy thinking? I mean he doesn't know it's better or just as good, he is just "opining" so.
is this simply Agenda driven and a bit disingenuous?

IOW since he is ANGRY, his respect for facts and the truth gets compromised.

Im timze lomar "no big deal" for scenario
Then let's say he adds:
"Statins are ineffective"

Then how do we pasqen?

Now let's say the poster is himself or herself a prescribing MD? Would that alter the level of culpability re: the mischaracterization of statins?

Now, what if he is an MD-PhD doing research on these kinds of issues and blogs away w/o doing any instead current research and relies upon 10-year old memories?

What level is he now?
Well within his rights?
Egregiously careless?
Downright dishonest for failing to keep current with the research available in journals and opining anyway?


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