By Paul Doyon
For years Forbes has been publishing commentaries attempting to downplay the dangers of wireless (and other forms of electromagnetic) radiation by not only attempting to criticize the wireless research and cast doubt upon the researchers, but also by publishing blatantly false and misleading information. Most of these articles have come from a Geoffrey Kabat, an epidemiologist known for his research, supported by the tobacco industry, downplaying the effects of second-hand cigarette smoke. Now, it seems that Kabat has become a champion for the wireless industry. Steven Salzburg, for example, also wrote in a 2014 piece published in Forbes stating that high-voltage power lines do not cause cancer and claimed that a 2002 WHO study designated extremely low frequency (ELF) electromagnetic fields (EMF) as a Class 3 carcinogen (not carcinogenic) when in fact the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) branch of the WHO did indeed declare ELF EMFs as a Class 2 carcinogen (possibly carcinogenic) in 2002– and in 2011, it went a step further by also declaring radio frequency [RF] EMF as a Class 2 carcinogen, though Salzburg conveniently also fails to mention this.
In an about-face, on January 13th, 2015, Forbes published an article entitled “Study Suggests Wi-Fi Exposure More Dangerous To Kids Than Previously Thought” (the original posted on the Take Back Your Power website), written by CEO of X Tech Ventures, author, and self-proclaimed technology geek, Robert J. Szczerba (who is “proud of his being the father of a wonderful little boy with autism”★) and based on a research study entitled “Why children absorb more microwave radiation than adults: The consequences,” (written by Lloyd Morgan, Santosh Kesari, and Devra Davis).
On January 14th, 2015, a revised version appeared on the Forbes‘ website: “Study Suggests Wi-Fi Exposure More Dangerous To Kids Than Previously Thought”
While it is wonderful that Forbes is now seriously addressing the wireless issue, in the revised version the following statement
the studies cited in the paper found RF/EMF exposure is linked to cancers of the brain and salivary glands, ADHD, low sperm count, and, among girls who keep cell phones in their bra, breast cancer.
was replaced with
More generally, the studies cited in the paper seek to link RF/EMF exposure to different types of cancer, low sperm count, and other disorders.
Furthermore, the following blurb with the obvious intent to mislead the public and discredit the authors of the study was also then added in the revised version:
However, it is important to note that survey articles such as these need to be taken in their proper context. This particular article is one group’s perspective. It was published in a relatively new and minor journal with limited data sets. They also note that the average time between exposure to a carcinogen and a resultant tumor is three or more decades,a thus making it difficult to arrive at definitive conclusions. This is not a call to throw out all electronic devices. However, at the very least, it should open up the discussion about different safety levels for adults versus children.
And to add gasoline to the fire, industry damage control is spreading to other media outlets like this spin story in the Pakistan Daily Times:
And in a further effort to damage-control the article, in response to Szczerba’s article, Salzburg has even chimed in with his own article in Forbes entitled “Wi-Fi Exposure Isn’t Killing Your Kids”: http://www.forbes.com/sites/stevensalzberg/2015/01/20/wi-fi-exposure-isnt-killing-your-kids/to which Devra Davis responds with a letter in the comment section.
While it is a welcome breath of fresh air to hear a CEO of a tech company and self-proclaimed tech geek acknowledge the likely dangers wireless radiation is posing to our health, the seemingly industry-pressured revisions and their damage-control articles in other media outlets are not only disconcerting, but also a testament to the attempt of the wireless industry to manipulate public opinion regarding the serious implications wireless-radiation exposure poses to our health and the health of our children.
★There is a growing body of evidence suggesting that EMFs are playing a role in the worldwide increase in autism. For more information, see, for example, Dr. Martha Herbert’s research published in the BioInitiative Report: http://www.bioinitiative.org/report/wp-content/uploads/pdfs/sec20_2012_Findings_in_Autism.pdf
About Paul Doyon:
Paul Doyon has been researching the biological effects of electromagnetic field exposure and working to educate the public about these effects since becoming ill living in the vicinity of several cell towers in 2005 while living in Japan. He was sick for six months with the symptoms described in the literature as “Chronic Fatigue Syndrome” before he even imagined that this might be caused by electromagnetic radiation exposures. After finding and renting a log house in the Japanese mountains in a white zone — an area free of cell phone signals — approximately 50% of his symptoms disappeared within the first 24 hours of staying there. He ended up staying in this place for four months to recover but during this time also started to become increasingly sensitive to electromagnetic fields. He publishes a blog called “The Microwave Factor” and manages a Yahoo Group called “EMF Refugee.” Paul holds a BA in Psychology, an MA in Teaching, and an MA in Advanced Japanese Studies and taught EFL/ESL for 25 years in seven countries.