[NBLUG/talk] EMF/EMR (was Re: Sebastopol Downtown WiFi

Walter Hansen gandalf at sonic.net
Thu Mar 13 08:39:19 PDT 2008

Yes it's the tin foil hat types. I've been hearing their arguments and 
rantings for a couple months now on wacco news lists. One person in Seb 
had their house re-wired (something like $100,000) with twisted wiring 
to lower EMF/EMR fields. They say that the type of boxes sonic is using 
are 100X more powerful than household wi-fi and most business will not 
take their networks down because of the free service.

They quote studies  from doctors without a lot of backing. It's rather 
typical from what I've seen from that group. The less evidence there is 
for something, the more hidden or secret it must be; therefore less 
evidence equals more truth.

Scott Doty wrote:
> On Thu, Mar 13, 2008 at 02:11:07AM -0700, Christopher Wagner wrote:
>> I must admit, I'm curious as to what the cons would be for having Sonic
>> set-up downtown WiFi?  Yes, the city is tacitly "approving" of Sonic.net
>> (a local business).  Are they the tinfoil hat types?  What's their gripe?
> Well, I hesitate to discount the people as "tinfoil hat types", as they may
> have very real fears about EMF and EMR.  However, two facts seem to take the
> wind out of their sails:  First, that there is no evidence that WiFi
> emissions cause harm; and second -- afaik -- Dane's war-driving experiments
> have shown there to be quite a few WiFi network already in operation in
> Sebastopol.
> Resources:  I've been a scientific skeptic for many years, and I've found
> the Skeptic's Dictionary to be as valuable as Snopes.com when examining
> phenomenon such as EMF sensitivity -- for a quick survey:
>    http://skepdic.com/emf.html
> Obquote:
>       At this time, it looks as if hypersensitivity to EMFs
>       (electrosensitivity or ES) is a psychosomatic disorder. (For example,
>       a research team in Norway (2007) conducted tests using sixty-five
>       pairs of sham and mobile phone radio frequency (RF) exposures. "The
>       increase in pain or discomfort in RF sessions was 10.1 and in sham
>       sessions 12.6 (P = 0.30). Changes in heart rate or blood pressure were
>       not related to the type of exposure (P: 0.30–0.88). The study gave no
>       evidence that RF fields from mobile phones may cause head pain or
>       discomfort or influence physiological variables. The most likely
>       reason for the symptoms is a nocebo effect.")
> There's also talk about a "possible" link between WiFi and autism, found here:
>    http://www.skepdic.com/refuge/funk59.html
> Of course, someone may have new information that isn't covered by the
> existing literature -- but it does appear that, when using double-blind
> experiments, there is no noticible effect of having WiFi on in the room with
> you, much less out on a street pole.
>  -Scott
> p.s. I have a Meraki up in my window in my den; I also have a Mac
> Mini on my desk, with built-in WiFi and Bluetooth... if there are harmful
> effects from these technologies, I'll probably be one big tumor by the time
> I'm 50... ;P
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