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May 3, 2005
Via Matthew Herper at Forbes, here's a real grit-your-teeth article on the ghostwriting of journal articles from inside my industry. Now, I know that this stuff has been going on for a long time in the medical world, and I know that it happens constantly with newspaper op-ed pieces. It's a growing trend/problem in the blog world, too, for that matter.
But all that doesn't mean that I have to approve of it, and I don't. This practice is not only wrong on the face of it, it's counterproductive. (I don't expect to convince anyone who needs convincing just by pointing out the ethical problems, you know.) The medical and scientific journals don't need any more junk in them than they have already, thanks very much. And the pharma industry doesn't need any more opportunities to be seen as a bunch of shady influence peddlers, either. We're already long that position pretty thoroughly, wouldn't you think?
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