This article was written in www.hans.org’s most recent newsletter.
The Hidden Wikipedia: Find deleted material about nutritional medicine
by Andrew W. Saul, PhD, Orthomolecular Medicine News Service
There is nothing quite like a paper trail, and Wikipedia has one. Consequently, you can read for yourself all the material that has been added, and then deleted.
For example: Wikipedia’s page about Max Gerson, M.D., is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Max_Gerson . The doctor is widely known for the nutritional cancer therapy that bears his name. Gerson’s principal biographer is his grandson, Howard Straus http://www.doctoryourself.com/gersonbio.htm . Mr. Straus tells the Orthomolecular Medicine News Service of some interesting experiences he has had with Wikipedia bias:
“Some years ago, on seeing that the pages for Dr. Max Gerson and the Gerson Therapy were only stubs (short place-holders with little information on them), I took it upon myself to flesh out the pages. I thought Wikipedia was fairly neutral on balance, so I put in all the information that I could, and kept it factual with references, citations, and literature links.
“Within a month, the following had happened:
“The information was labeled as “biased” and “unreliable” because I am Dr. Gerson’s grandson and biographer. There appeared a big red flag at the top of the article labeling the articles neutrality “dubious.” The photograph I posted was removed. Provable, referenced facts, with dates and places, all suddenly became “claims,” even quotes from no less than Nobel Laureate Albert Schweitzer, M.D., who famously said: “I see in Dr. Max Gerson one of the most eminent geniuses in medical history.” Dr. Schweitzer and his wife were patients of Dr. Gerson, making this a first-hand account from a rather reliable source.
“All my links, references and citations were removed. They were replaced by links to the American Cancer Society and National Cancer Institute, which offer only criticism of the Gerson Therapy. Even quotations from published scientific papers were removed. Attempts to rectify these actions were immediately overwritten.
“It’s easy enough to show the progression of the pages, since Wikipedia displays former edits on request, dated and documented. One can verify this by clicking on the “History” tab at the top of the Max Gerson page, and looking at 2005 and before. My editing is archived at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Contributions/188.8.131.52
“A second Wikipedia page, specific to the Gerson Therapy, has been completely removed. http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Gerson_the… . To see something of what happened, you can click the “History” tab here as well.”
The OMNS adds just one other intriguing statement about Dr. Gerson’s work that is probably too “unreliable” to be seen on Wikipedia:
“I know of one patient who turned to Gerson Therapy having been told she was suffering from terminal cancer and would not survive another course of chemotherapy. Happily, seven years later, she is alive and well. So it is vital that, rather than dismissing such experiences, we should further investigate the beneficial nature of these treatments.” (H.R.H. Charles, Prince of Wales)
Max Gerson is not the only nutritionally-oriented physician whose work is slanted or censored at Wikipedia. Others include Matthias Rath, M.D., and Robert F. Cathcart III, M.D.
For more information about Max Gerson, M.D.: http://www.orthomolecular.org/resources/omns/v06n18….
For more information about Orthomolecular.org: http://www.orthomolecular.org/