Understatement of the week- Ben Goldacre tenacious

Went to the wonderful “Geek Girls” event about wordpress today, at MadLab. Met Mike Little, who was – like the other people there – the picture of affability and helpfulness. He and I had a brief conversation about reputation management online and compartmentalised digital lives (Dwight Towers not being my real name, but it only taking about 3 seconds for anyone who could be bothered to figure out who I am.) I cited HR companies checking out potential employees, and the FT saying that was silly cos you’d lose lots of quality staff just because one of their mates posted photos and ‘helpfully’ tagged everyone.

That’s a very long digression to this article, which was facebooked by a good and very bright London friend.

Be careful what you tweet by Bill Thompson

And there’s this quote-

“This is a serious mistake, not only because the connnection between @gillianmckeith and the official site is clear and well-documented but because Ben Goldacre is a tenacious and eloquent opponent who enjoys the support of large numbers of people who consider him a vital opponent of proponents of bogus treatments, misleading surveys and magical thinking. He is not to be trifled with, online or off.”

And that, for anyone still reading through all the digressions, is the understatement of the week. Ben Goldacre, a hero of mine, reminds me of two things.
a) What Paul Johnson said of Noam Chomsky (I can’t find the exact quote) that he was relentless and never let go of a topic in a dispute

b) What Kyle Reese said of the Terminator.
“Listen, and understand. That terminator is out there. It can’t be bargained with. It can’t be reasoned with. It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.”

And for the ouevre of Gillian McKeith, (or, to give her her full medical title, Gillian McKeith)? Well, there’s that line from Aliens.

“I say we take off and nuke the entire site from orbit”

[Any libel/"incitement" lawyers out there - please note I am talking about the work, not the person.]

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