A well-known medical blogger is condemning one of his peers for posting articles about alternative medicine. Orac, of the blog Respectful Insolence, recently posted an article taking issue with Dr. Kevin Pho, who writes at KevinMD.
Specifically, Orac took Dr. Pho to task for letting guest bloggers post about acupuncture, mind-body dualism, and opening one’s mind to alternative therapies.
“I have to say,” Orac posted, “I never would have expected to find a post like this on KevinMD. I had always thought that Dr. Pho was a proponent of science-based medicine (or at least evidence-based medicine), and it's exceedingly disappointing to see this sort of nonsense on his blog.”
Dr. Pho soon responded with a comment of his own: “As readers of this blog know, I often post pieces here I don’t necessarily agree with myself to promote discussion and debate. Your concerns are certainly valid, and will be taken into consideration as I choose future pieces.”
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This explanation gave Orac further fuel for his indignation: He accused Dr. Pho of posting about non-science-based medicine in order to get more Web traffic. “I didn’t want to believe it,” he responded to Dr. Pho, “but one of my readers commented that it looks like you’ve become all about the page views, traffic, and advertising. Your comment makes me think he might well have been correct.”
Several commenters on KevinMD agreed with Orac, saying that if Dr. Pho wants to continue to market his blog as a source of reliable medical information, he cannot permit guest bloggers to espouse “feelgood BS.” One commenter said that Dr. Pho’s posting these pieces is “a complete abdication of responsibility, and just lets the nonsense wrap itself in supposed respectability from the more sane and well-reasoned posts.”
What do you think? Is Dr. Pho posting these articles for fast, cheap web traffic? Or should he be allowed to discuss alternative medicine on his site, despite being a traditionally trained doctor and proponent of science-based medicine?
Originally posted at GrannyMed