Today Tonight: product promotion dressed as health news

Today Tonight Tomorrow’s Trash.

Our daily newspapers (and some medical papers/journals) are a collection of bad news and rubbish collated to sell advertising space. Today Tonight follows in this modern ‘journalistic’ tradition.

I suggest the following free therapy, for all arthritis sufferers, and the general public:

– turn off your TV (calories consumed in front of the TV seem to lead to greater weight gain, sitting is statistically bad for you)
– go for a walk (exercise is good for you, can lead to weight loss, less weight through joints improves arthritis symptoms, increased levels of fitness improve arthritis symptoms)
– repeat thrice daily (who needs willpower when you have habit?)

Enjoy this advice in good health!


Today TonightLast Friday on the Seven Network’s Today Tonight (TT), an episode on arthritis featured respected GP Dr Robert Menz, who gave a very solid interview – warning about the over-use of opioid medications, and promoting exercise and weight loss.

Dr Menz, speaking on behalf of the RACGP, would have known the TT episode’s byline – Are doctors over-prescribing pain killers for arthritis? – quite reasonably concluding the topic was worth comment. I am also a spokesperson for the RACGP (disclaimer: not at this very moment!) and also happily add my GP voice to various health issues.

However, what the good doctor didn’t know was that the whole episode was a thinly disguised advertorial for the products of two multinational companies, IBSA Biochimique and Bioceuticals (Blackmores).

In fact, virtually the entire footage besides Dr Menz’s interview was cut-and-pasted from two previous TT episodes promoting the exact same two arthritis pills.


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