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Posts Tagged ‘wired’

The Ongoing Vaccination Debate: A Good Thing

Sunday, November 8th, 2009

The ongoing debate about whether or not to go along with the push to vaccinate has got me thinking, maybe people are actually waking from their comfortable slumber. It’s a very heated and complex issue, so I hesitate to blog about it but felt compelled.

For ages we humans have been used to getting our information from others. Long ago it was the kings and bishops, now priests, ministers, politicians and doctors. We listened obediently without questioning to those who knew better than we did. In the past this was understandable, most were illiterate for the most part and required scribes, holy men, and sages to enlighten us.

Today, although these practices have our instincts in a highly weakened state, people are literate and highly capable of figuring out things through their own research. They are finally starting to embody Baha’u’llah‘s recent teachings encouraging the ‘independent investigation of truth‘, emphasizing the fundamental obligation of human beings to acquire knowledge with their “own eyes and not through the eyes of others.”

A great example of this is this debate about vaccinations. Over 40% of people now refuse vaccinations despite great pressure to do so. It sparked my interest when one of my favorite magazines, Wired magazine published a very opinionated front cover stance encouraging vaccination ‘in the name of science’ Which I found very disappointing.
Doctors insist you get them, but then traditional medical doctors have to because they work hand in hand with drug companies to band aid symptoms, rather than studying diet, allergies, and nutrition, and trying to deal with the root of the problem. (My apologies for my bias here with medical doctors, but if my mother had listened to doctors when I was a baby, I would be very ill right now if not dead, being the survivor of 5 miscarriages who’s health problems got worse in the hands of MD’s)

The Wired article tries to show the kingpin of vaccinations, Paul Offit in a positive light, without really giving any solid fact or reasons doctors and governments should be insisting we get vaccinated. It’s written by someone without any credibility in the field.

Another article in the Huffington Post shows Paul Offit in a very different light and gives the opposing perspective. What is telling about both articles are the 500+ comments on them. People are getting tired of being told to do something potentially damaging without a good reason, so they are doing their own research. And the medical profession doesn’t like it because it means they’re losing control over doing things the way they want to and have been for centuries. It’s the same issue that is overturning the music industry. The People are winning the battle, and it is a very good thing.

The interesting thing is how the comments shed far more light on the truth behind the vaccine debate than the articles ever can. Did you know that the last time many of the diseases babies are vaccinated for were a concern was in the 1920’s?

When those who should be caring for us insist we subject ourselves to potentially damaging substances that have now been shown to potentially do more harm than good, how can we trust what they tell us to do any longer?
When the best interests of humanity have been left in the hands of those who primarily aim to profit from it, we need to build up our instincts again and rely more on independent investigation of truth to see through the veils that have been quietly and subtly placed all around us. Not that we shouldn’t listen to professionals, just do your research as well before making decisions.

I personally feel the lack of solid research makes it hard to make a confident decision. But I’m hesitant to get injected or inject my future children with poisons that could cause serious health problems to possibly fight some diseases that were primarily an issue in the 1920’s and represent little threat today, but that is just my own opinion, and I’ve learned enough about health to feel confident in healing anything.
Read the articles and all the comments and links therein, and see what you feel to be the right decision for you.

Data proves that free or shared music files are not lost sales

Saturday, August 2nd, 2008

For some time now I, along with many others in the music industry, have been going on about free music not representing a lost sale, but a gained listener.

Frequently, many music industry professionals suggest that an increase in legitimate sales must necessarily coincide with a commensurate reduction in ‘piracy’, as if this were a fact, yet, the research company BigChampagne has made no such consistent observation in nearly a decade of analyzing online data about music. Rather, it finds that piracy rates follow awareness and interest… The biggest selling albums and songs are nearly always the most widely pirated, regardless of all the ‘anti-piracy’ tactics employed by music companies.

Wired magazine talked about the factual data supporting mega rock band Radiohead‘s decision to allow users to pay what they wanted for their latest album.
All of the torrenting/free downloading of Radiohead’s of In Rainbows album contributed to the album making such a big impression on a listening public that’s bombarded with an ever increasing amount of information. Without it having been so widely traded, BigChampage’s data report says that Radiohead’s album wouldn’t necessarily have shot to the top of the charts and their worldwide tour wouldn’t have been such a smashing success, and I have to agree.

Applying economic principles to digital music, BigChamagne found that “the challenge of achieving popularity (or attention) when the old rules of scarcity (of product) and excludability don’t apply (to information goods) the way they used to, changes the monetization game completely.”

BigChamagne came to the undeniable conclusion that the music industry needs to stop thinking of shared files as lost sales, and start treating them as an aspect of reality upon which they can build part of their businesses.

You can download a detailed paper on this topic here. I haven’t studied it in detail yet so I would love to hear your insights.