Social Media & Medical Diagnosis: Could Your Online Doctor Kill You?

Is social media slowly replacing the traditional form of curing illnesses by doctor visits followed by diagnosis and medical prescriptions? Can social media really kill you through misdiagnosis? Should we really trust online doctors who give out free or universal drug prescriptions?

An Intro into My Train of Thoughts…

Misdiagnosis By Angela Melick

Misdiagnosis By Angela Melick

I won’t go as far as Voltaire and say, and I quote: “Doctors are men who prescribe medicines of which they know little, to cure diseases of which they know less, in human beings of whom they know nothing.”But I sure do agree that this quote can be applied to many “trendy” online doctor-wannabe’s who claim to have the know-how to diagnose medical issues simply through reading a bunch of symptoms!

Recently, and with the increasing reliance on social media for almost every little piece of news we read and advice we need, social media has become a place for “self-acclaimed” gurus in every field, even the critical field of medicine!

This worries me!

If you look at solid statistics, you will be able to clearly see that there are around 80,000 deaths reported annually, in the US alone, due to doctors’ mistakes and wrong diagnosis! Add to that the fact that, in these times we’re living, anything can kill you; what you eat, what you drink and even anger!

Anonymous Atheists, Christian Evangelists & Mosques in Second Life… Spam?

“Have you met my friend?” A question asked too often at malls in the Midwest yet now, it carries a totally different meaning in the post-Facebook world. Muslim and Christian Evangelist of all shades and colors, who includes you: early Sunday morning door-knocking Jehovah’s witness, have been making our life more colorful by stopping the normal flow of our lives at malls, schools, and even at our own home with attempts to salvage our souls. Now they have gone digital and with a zeal.

The Holy Book in my right and a mouse in the left?

The mating of religion and social media seems like a perfect match but is it? Let me extrapolate; Evangelists are always striving to save as many people as they can, why else would they go to the depth of the Amazon spending decades trying to convert some reclusive tribe. Therefore, tools that enable them to reach a wider audience would surely be of an interest to them. The internet is one of those tools, and social media is definitely where the people are at. So in recent years, we have been seeing many examples “religious” people using social networks to further their cause. Popular ministers such as Rick Warren and Joel Osteen have about 30,000 followers each. You can even find people as important as His Holiness on the web.

The Muslim’s won’t be outdone either!

Christians aren’t the only faith group embracing social media; all of them are. If you went to the Middle East Island in Second Life last week you would have been greeted by this lovely invitation.

Invitation to the lecture

Invitation To The Lecture

This is an invitation to a lecture presented by the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice, they are the same people that banned cats, dogs and the color red. The lecture commemorated Ramadan, the holy month of fasting for Muslims, and encouraged the denizens to bask in the holiness of the month. The community that is hosting the lecture in their own virtual estate proudly boasts being able to “revert” 7 people from the United States to Islam when they visited the mosques. Online evangelism is hardly as passive as this lecture makes it seem! Religious people are taking a trick out of their playbook and being more proactive in their activities in the virtual world. So instead of waiting for people with similar interests to flock to their virtual Meccas, they are going out soliciting con(re)verts.

Will Social Media Help in Saving the Planet?

The Copenhagen conference around climate change is close. Tough negotiations are taking place between the world countries in order to divide the carbon bill. There is a huge conflict of interests and some countries are standing against needed climate actions. A group of environmentalists – 350.org – are calling out people around the world to act and put pressure on their governments to be responsible and take the necessary actions to save life on this planet.

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