Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Recent articles on dangers of cell phone use

In the past week two articles of fairly significant length and research dealing with the dangers of cell phone use, specifically bombarding our heads with microwave radiation, have come out in those most scientific of organs GQ and Harper's. The GQ article, written by Christopher Ketcham, entitled Warning: Your Cell Phone May Be Hazardous to Your Health has a picture of a pack of cigarettes and a cell pone side by side. (This article was also featured, along with an interview of Ketcham by Glass, on the most recent iteration of This American Life. The cell phone segment hits around the 46:45 point and run about 13+ minutes. It's worth listening to.)

The Harper's article, authored by Nathaniel Rich, is entitled For Whom the Cell Tolls. (Unfortunately you need to subscribe to access the whole article-the Library does have this issue on the journal shelves.) Both articles are good to read in tandem as they cover slightly different areas but collaborate on the important stuff.

1) There are a bunch of contradictory studies about the effects of cell phones. Most of the positive ones are funded by the cell phone industry and most of the negative results are coming from Europe.
2) Both articles admit this sounds like a conspiracy theory. Both articles also offer fairly compelling research and information that suggests humans are not meant to have microwave radiation regularly emanating into their skulls.
3) Neither article suggests an alternate course of action mostly because as Ketcham indicates "modern in the grip of wireless technology". For instance: cellphones as credit card readers.

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