Weekly Roundup

A report conducted by the LSE and private healthcare firm Bupa questioned more than 12,000 people from 12 countries and found that 81 percent of those with Internet access use it to search for medical advice, but only a quarter of them check where their online advice has come from. Another study done by researchers at the Department of Pediatrics at Nottingham University Hospitals in Britain looked into 500 websites and found only 39 percent provided the correct information to a question about common childhood ailments. While these studies raise concerns about the accuracy of medical information on the Internet and public reliance on it, it is also worthwhile, in our opinion, to ask who determines what the right answers are.

Four in 10 Americans, slightly fewer today than in years past, believe God created humans in their present form about 10,000 years ago. Thirty-eight percent believe God guided a process by which humans developed over millions of years from less advanced life forms, while 16%, up slightly from years past, believe humans developed over millions of years, without God’s involvement, Gallup survey reveals.

Historian of science Will Thomas writes a sketch of the history of agricultural research and education in the UK on Ether Wave Propaganda.

Christine Rosen reviews a forthcoming book entitled Is the Internet Changing the Way You Think?: The Net’s Impact on Our Minds and Future. In the book, 150 authors, including scientists, philosophers and artists, write on the way the Internet affects human thought.

U.S. officials have decided to close down the Tevatron particle accelerator as originally planned, and not to extend extra funding of $35 million to prolong its operation for three more years, in which American physicists hoped it could beat the CERN Large Hadron Collider in the race for finding the Higgs boson, Nature News reports.

New philosophy podcasts on Philosophy Bites. Martha Nussbaum talks about the value and importance of the humanities, and Philip Pettit talks about group agency – how groups can act, believe, and held responsible by others.

Is the Internet Changing the Way You Think?: The Net’s Impact on Our Minds and Future

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2 Responses to Weekly Roundup

  1. W. Dean says:
    [+]

    1. After citing the study on the quality of medical advice on the internet you suggested that “who determines what the right answers are” is a good question to ask. Maybe I missed something, because the answer seems rather uncontroversial: physicians, pharmacists and physiotherapists (etc.) shou...

    • Boaz Miller Boaz Miller says:
      [+]

      Health and disease are inherently normative concepts. Therefore it is not clear that healthcare professionals are the only ones who determine the right answers to questions of the from of "what ought to be done about condition X". Maybe this doesn't really come up in common childhood ailments, but t...

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