Allergic to WiFi
June 17, 2008 9:49 AM   Subscribe

Are you allergic to WiFi? Some residents of Sante Fe, NM certainly think they are and they want to take away municipal WiFi to sate their delusions.
posted by socalsamba (98 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
Allergic to wifi.... and double blind tests!
posted by Artw at 9:53 AM on June 17, 2008 [4 favorites]


I'll take their municipal WiFi if they don't want it. And if they have public fiber optic, I'll take that too. Also, I bet their free kindergarten is causing cancer--I know some kids who could take that off their hands.
posted by DU at 9:55 AM on June 17, 2008 [5 favorites]


Ben Goldacre's Bad Science blog has a lot about this phenomenon in the UK.
posted by camcgee at 9:56 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


The guy in Santa Fe leading this 'revolt' against wifi is such a kook he has his own wiki entry.
posted by Mach5 at 9:57 AM on June 17, 2008


I actually ran into an old friend the other day who has a cellphone sensitivity. He also used the term "allergic" to describe it. For a moment I was pretty interested in his condition, as I'd never heard of such a thing. He even claimed to have filed for (and gotten) disability for it. After a few moments, however, moments of him constantly swaying and ducking in order to keep me between himself and anyone he saw with a cellphone, moments of him describing people who would stand outside his house and wave cellphones and 'other devices' at him, moments of him theorizing on the "real nature of satellite towers" (his quote, it just stuck in my mind,) I realized he probably did get disability. But not for his allergies.....

It was kind of sad. I remember him from high school, and he was always pretty odd. The intervening years hadn't been kind, I guess.
posted by elwoodwiles at 10:01 AM on June 17, 2008 [9 favorites]


[Arthur Firstenberg has] not held a job since 1990 and [is] living off Social Security as he [can] not find a workplace without computers.

On the plus side, many workplaces will be happy to put you in an office that doesn't get the deadliest EM radiation of all: sunshine! *musical sting*
posted by DU at 10:01 AM on June 17, 2008 [3 favorites]


Most allergies are psychosomatic. If you believe you're allergic to something then you will have symptoms. I used to have what many people (including my doctor) call "hay fever".

Being allergic to wifi is no more delusional than being allergic to ragweed and pollen, etc..

Most of the world and the medical establishment are in the dark ages when it comes to the effects our emotions and unconscious mind have on our well-being.
posted by Zambrano at 10:02 AM on June 17, 2008


I used to have what many people (including my doctor) call "hay fever".

This gives me an idea. Instead of telling people allergic to WiFi that there's no such thing as "electromagnetic hypersensitivity", we should tell them that it exists and can be cured with aromatherapy candles.
posted by DU at 10:05 AM on June 17, 2008 [6 favorites]


Sebastopol, CA also blocked free public WiFi. It's absolutely hilarious.
posted by zsazsa at 10:05 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yeah, I think Randi spoke about these kooks and the challenge is open to them.

Weird that these people don't seem to be affected until you tell them there's a new wireless network up. What, they have been living in an EMF-free zone up until then? Right...
posted by splice at 10:06 AM on June 17, 2008


It's too bad they published the results of that study on the web. Now none of these people will see it!
posted by Pollomacho at 10:10 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Most allergies are psychosomatic.

Most as in 51% or most as in 98%?

Or is this just something you're throwing out off the dome? I wish my allergies were all in my mind. They aren't, unfortunately. These WiFi allergy people may be kooky, but lets not extend that to everybody with allergies just yet.
posted by cashman at 10:11 AM on June 17, 2008


Yeah, that bee sting allergy is just because of some childhood trauma when your father hit you with a pillow case that had a cartoon bee on it.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:12 AM on June 17, 2008 [19 favorites]


Sheesh -- don't these people know that tinfoil hats will block EM rays?
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 10:13 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


I wonder how many of these people have microwaves and portable phones, both of which transmit radio waves in the 2.4 GHz frequency as WiFi.

(My guess is "all of them".)

Oh, well. At least they get attention and a reason to feel like they're special.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:13 AM on June 17, 2008


That's cold, though, isn't it? I'm sure that at least some of these people truly do believe that they are sensitive to the stuff, and we should do what we can to help them. At the same time, no part of "do what we can to help them" involves pandering to their "condition."
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:15 AM on June 17, 2008


Yeah, that bee sting allergy is just because of some childhood trauma when your father hit you with a pillow case that had a cartoon bee on it.

I think the trauma was because the pillowcase was full of oranges. Perhaps you father was John Cusak?
posted by GuyZero at 10:15 AM on June 17, 2008


If you believe you're allergic to something then you will have symptoms.

Are you joking? Please tell me you're joking. Or maybe you think psychosomatics explains, say, my ex going into anaphylactic shock and almost dying from an adult-onset food allergy she had no idea she she had.
posted by dersins at 10:16 AM on June 17, 2008


Being allergic to wifi is no more delusional than being allergic to ragweed and pollen, etc..

Um, except that WiFi signals don't turn into particles that get caught in your mucous membranes.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:16 AM on June 17, 2008 [9 favorites]


What? Hay fever doesn't exist now? Did I miss a memo?
posted by designbot at 10:17 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


I wonder how many of these people have microwaves and portable phones, both of which transmit radio waves in the 2.4 GHz frequency as WiFi.

(My guess is "all of them".)


Only until you tell them. At that point they will recall always being uneasy or getting a tingling when using these devices. A year after they will say they always got hives when using them and stopped because they couldn't bear it anymore. 2 years after and they never have been able to use these devices and never owned any.
posted by splice at 10:17 AM on June 17, 2008 [12 favorites]


Zambrano: if you're going to come here blazing with those new agey comments you'll have to be prepared to 1)back that crap up with cites and/or 2)get eviscerated.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:18 AM on June 17, 2008


Most allergies are psychosomatic

My allergies to bee stings are not psychosomatic. I'd rather not be allergic, but last time I got stung I lost consciousness for about 3 minutes. I remember thinking when I got stung that I might not be allergic anymore since it had been about seven years since I was last stung. It took about 20 minutes to hit me. I cleared my head of all thoughts and waited for a change in the state of my body before I did anything. I remember having a hard time decyphering the pictograms on the side of my epi-pen, something a 4 year old can do. So I knew I still had sensitivity. I stuck my leg and stood up. Next thing I remember is lying in the parking lot with my brother and his girlfriend putting my legs up on my car, with the wail of sirens in the distance.

Everytime my reaction has been different, the time before my blood pressure skyrocketed. This last time my blood pressure crashed. Histamine is a f*cker.
posted by The Power Nap at 10:20 AM on June 17, 2008 [6 favorites]


Most as in 51% or most as in 98%?

Possibly "most" as in "passive", though probably "most" as in "voice".
posted by Smart Dalek at 10:20 AM on June 17, 2008


Being allergic to wifi is no more delusional than being allergic to ragweed and pollen, etc..


All kinds of kooks out today...
posted by mr_roboto at 10:22 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


I wonder how many of these people have microwaves and portable phones, both of which transmit radio waves in the 2.4 GHz frequency as WiFi.

Actually, my guess is "none of them." I know lots of people (including family members) who decline to own one or the other or both of these "just in case." It doesn't seem to have affected their quality of life.
posted by small_ruminant at 10:23 AM on June 17, 2008


C'mon, guys, Zambrano (Zam-brain-o, amirite?) is only fighting fire with fire. Fucking embarrassing crazy fire with fucking embarrassing crazy fire.
posted by OmieWise at 10:26 AM on June 17, 2008


This caused me to have Mathowie saying "Our children's bones hurt because you have wireless..." stuck in my head. Awesome.

Most allergies are psychosomatic...I used to have what many people (including my doctor) call "hay fever".

Being allergic to wifi is no more delusional than being allergic to ragweed and pollen, etc..

Most of the world and the medical establishment are in the dark ages when it comes to the effects our emotions and unconscious mind have on our well-being.


Hoooooo boy, Zambrano. Ain't you something special...
posted by CitrusFreak12 at 10:27 AM on June 17, 2008


Are these folks allergic to 802.11g or is it just your run-of-the-mill B allergy?
posted by bondcliff at 10:27 AM on June 17, 2008 [3 favorites]


Most allergies are psychosomatic.

And I'm guessing I'm not really near-sighted either?
posted by The Light Fantastic at 10:29 AM on June 17, 2008 [4 favorites]


See also: this comic by wellington grey.

I believe it to be the truth.
posted by Arturus at 10:29 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


It's STILL REAL TO ME DAMMIT!!!
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 10:32 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Sheesh -- don't these people know that tinfoil hats will block EM rays?

Not tinfoil. A microwave protection Headnet for only £27.00!
posted by yeti at 10:33 AM on June 17, 2008


Most allergies are psychosomatic.

Come on grandma, get up, don't you know that most strokes are just psychosomatic?
posted by Pollomacho at 10:33 AM on June 17, 2008


camcgee wrote: Ben Goldacre's Bad Science blog has a lot about this phenomenon in the UK.

The Panorama documentary Goldacre discusses in that post is worth watching, if only as an example of spectacularly biased, unscientific science programming. (Which is depressing: Panorama used to be a fine documentary series, but now just punts Daily Mail-level bibble.)

M.C. Lo-Carb! wrote: Sheesh -- don't these people know that tinfoil hats will block EM rays?

They do. You can buy a fetching metal mesh beekeeper-style hat for that very purpose from one of these morons (or, possibly, a non-moron moron-exploiter).
posted by jack_mo at 10:33 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


I didn't realize how ignorant everyone here is. Listen up people: 99% of all medical conditions are psychosomatic. Nobody is born with things like diabetes, they just get it into their heads that they don't have enough insulin, which causes all of their "symptoms". Nobody needs things like penicillin, smallpox vaccines, blood transfusions, etc., they were all just invented by the evil medical industry to pray on people's mental disorders.

The only true way to prevent disease is through The Power of Positive Thinking™. For only 3 payments of $299, you can buy my Power of Positive Thinking™ audio tapes, which will unlock the secrets of Thought Healing™. Mention this MeFi thread, and I'll throw in my patented Thought Enhancer Adamantium Power Bracelet™ for free (a savings of over $500!).
posted by burnmp3s at 10:41 AM on June 17, 2008 [3 favorites]


I'm allergic to all kinds of stuff like cellphones. Hell, just the other day I took one, ground it up, snorted it, and I got this really weird rash as a direct result.

In fairness though, that might have been because it was a Motorola, those things have always affected me in weird ways. Samsungs are much better, I hardly ever get any skin reactions when I ingest those.
posted by quin at 10:45 AM on June 17, 2008 [3 favorites]


(or, possibly, a non-moron moron-exploiter).

Never, ever, underestimate the intelligence of a moron-exploiter. The first folks into any given paranoia market are probably true believers, but it doesn't take long for the professionals to arrive.

Why? Because it's so, so easy. Just about all you have to do is spin the "I understand, I believe you, and I'm here to help" angle, and people throw money your way. You don't even need to spend money on packaging or product design; the most ridiculously half-assed product will fly, because the mere presence of the product reinforces their lunatic beliefs.

Finally! Someone that will listen to them, and it's just $24.95!

The only problem is that you have to be able to listen to their lunatic rants with a straight face, which is something I personally never mastered. Which sucks, because I'm pretty sure everyone needs my special Structured Quantum Healing Water. It works great with the Thought Enhancer Adamantium Power Bracelet! Double your healing, for only $12.95 extra!

...lest we all get too snarky, I remind everyone that a cosmetics company sells a facial spray (basically water, plus tiny quantities of random extra crap that sounds nice on a label) that claims to protect you from the aging powers of electromagnetic radiation. Saw it in Nordstrom's, just last month.

Not a crystal talisman shop, but a major retailer. For every insecurity, there's a con artist selling product.
posted by aramaic at 10:57 AM on June 17, 2008 [4 favorites]


Don't listen to burnmp3s!

Most things can be cured with vitamins, find out more and take our free personality test at scientology.org.
posted by The Power Nap at 11:01 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


My wife worked for a while, years ago, in a healthfood store in New England. She would come home with stories about work and I could never decide whether it was the customers or the employees who were nuttier. It was like ground zero for the homeopathic cancelling of science's google.

Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go buy more kleenex for my non-existent pollen allergy.
posted by cortex at 11:07 AM on June 17, 2008


Here's a simple demonstration. While a nearby repeater is active, ask them to describe their symptoms. Then turn the repeater off, and ask them if they feel better. If they say yes, point out that they're standing in the coverage area of several home and business WiFi networks of at least equal power to the one you turned off, and see if they say their symptoms are back.
posted by George_Spiggott at 11:09 AM on June 17, 2008


Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go buy more kleenex for my non-existent pollen allergy.

Suck it up, dude! Literally.
posted by Fuzzy Skinner at 11:10 AM on June 17, 2008


I hear that WiFi causes Morgellons Syndrome in 9 out of 10 Targeted Individuals.
posted by Afroblanco at 11:15 AM on June 17, 2008 [2 favorites]


Oh, hai, guise? Stop responding to the obvious troll. If you're not sure it's a troll, look at the short yet overtly contentious posting history.

I suggest further discussion be taken to MeTa, otherwise, let's table the "OMG PSAICOSOMADIC" derail. One person made the assertion, and it has already been addressed by at least one person who gave the commenter the benefit of the doubt.

Of course, if it makes you feel smug to rise to the bait, keep at it.
posted by Eideteker at 11:16 AM on June 17, 2008


I'd like to point something to you fine people, an important detail that most of you are probably missing:

These people live in Santa Fe.

Santa Fe is a weird place. And I'm from LA, so my tolerance for weirdness is much higher than that of your average person.
posted by joedan at 11:18 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Santa Fe is a weird place. I live here. I'll report to anyone who wants to know what goes on. They had a poll at the library asking people's opinion on WiFi and there was one 'against' in a list of 200 signatures.
posted by kylefreund at 11:25 AM on June 17, 2008


Dude, that harsh WiFi is totally interfering with my crystal resonance healing wand!
posted by ...possums at 11:31 AM on June 17, 2008


The former Norwegian Prime Minister and director general of WHO Gro Harlem Brundtland claimed that she had this condition. University of Essex in the UK has been conducting their own study into electromagnetic hypersensitivity (EHS) that's supposed to wrap up at the end of the year.
posted by Challahtronix at 11:34 AM on June 17, 2008


Santa Fe’s city council has spoken, and it seems they think the complaint is a [sic] spurious as the rest of us.

And you know how spurious we all are!
posted by not_on_display at 11:42 AM on June 17, 2008


I saw we just put them all in Faraday cages. (Ok. That would be mean, but anyone want to get into the mesh outerwear industry?!)
posted by quanta and qualia at 11:42 AM on June 17, 2008


saw? saw three? Obviously, I SAY we just... you know.
posted by quanta and qualia at 11:43 AM on June 17, 2008


...lest we all get too snarky, I remind everyone that a cosmetics company sells a facial spray (basically water, plus tiny quantities of random extra crap that sounds nice on a label) that claims to protect you from the aging powers of electromagnetic radiation. Saw it in Nordstrom's, just last month.

Many, many companies sell products that protect against the aging effects of electromagnetic radiation, particularly in the 200-400 nm wavelength range.
posted by mr_roboto at 11:50 AM on June 17, 2008 [7 favorites]


I thought we were scurrilous.
posted by cortex at 11:53 AM on June 17, 2008


That would be mean, but anyone want to get into the mesh outerwear industry

So those dudes with the mesh tank tops, they're on the cutting edge of personal protection? Never saw that coming.
posted by maxwelton at 11:56 AM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'll give a more charitable read to Zambrano's glib derail. It has been shown that people suffering intense depression or other mental health disorders can also have related immune system dysfunctions. This is probably due to them not looking after their bodies as they should, rather than any supposed mastery of the unconscious or whatever he's on about. A certain food or environmental allergy that would otherwise cause only a sneeze or sniffle in a healthy individual is magnified due to the weakened immune system. Now, this doesn't mean that if you're otherwise happy and healthy then that allergy to shellfish is simply a reflection of your inability to take full control of the power of your subconscious mind. Just means if you're already zonked then a minor allergy will have more of an impact. But otherwise, it's bollocks.
posted by Burhanistan at 11:58 AM on June 17, 2008


Both psychosomatic symptoms and actual allergies occur in the world sometimes.

It's OK.
posted by lampoil at 11:58 AM on June 17, 2008 [2 favorites]


Heh, mutual exclusivity needs a good shunning, eh?
posted by Burhanistan at 12:00 PM on June 17, 2008


yea, it seems like half of Santa Fe knows what health is and how to be healthy but won't shut up. Though I would think that this guy is safe because he is thinking on a crazy-solo non-resonant frequency.
posted by MNDZ at 12:01 PM on June 17, 2008


I read Zambrano's comment as "there's plenty of things we don't know". And you know what, that's actually correct.

That's why we invented double blind tests. To find out things we don't yet know.
posted by DreamerFi at 12:04 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


particularly in the 200-400 nm wavelength range

...the spray I saw advertised broad-spectrum effect, specifically including cellphones and other wireless signals. Circa $30 a bottle too. Nicely packaged though, and with cleverly-selected French-seeming phrases.

Sunblock manufacturers are a bunch of chumps. They could be all over this market, with essentially zero effort.
posted by aramaic at 12:22 PM on June 17, 2008


...lest we all get too snarky, I remind everyone that a cosmetics company sells a facial spray (basically water, plus tiny quantities of random extra crap that sounds nice on a label) that claims to protect you from the aging powers of electromagnetic radiation. Saw it in Nordstrom's, just last month.

Fad beauty products are the baseline of Seriousness now?
posted by DU at 12:22 PM on June 17, 2008


I read Zambrano's comment as "there's plenty of things we don't know". And you know what, that's actually correct.


You read a comment stating that most allergies are psychological as saying there are things we don't know? How?

His statement is not "actually correct". It wasn't correct on any level.
posted by Justinian at 12:33 PM on June 17, 2008


...the spray I saw advertised broad-spectrum effect, specifically including cellphones and other wireless signals. Circa $30 a bottle too. Nicely packaged though, and with cleverly-selected French-seeming phrases.

Did the label say something about erecting a Faraday Cage around the user?

'cause that's pretty much the only thing that's going to have any effect.
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:39 PM on June 17, 2008


I wonder how many of these people have microwaves and portable phones, both of which transmit radio waves in the 2.4 GHz frequency as WiFi.

(My guess is "all of them".)

Oh, well. At least they get attention and a reason to feel like they're special.


Thanks for that, I was wondering that exact thing but I couldn't remember what other things were on that same spectrum.
posted by mattholomew at 12:40 PM on June 17, 2008


I read Zambrano's comment as validation that I am spectactularly good-looking. And that's actually correct.
posted by mattholomew at 12:46 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Someone wanting to exploit people who worried about something like this could simply release a sunblock like cream which included some trace metals, and they could, as Pope Guilty pointed out, suggest that it had a Faraday Cage like effect across the body.

This wouldn't, of course, actually do anything, but given the little extra effort to include some Science!y sounding jargon on the packaging would probably ensure you made some money on it.
posted by quin at 1:09 PM on June 17, 2008


Have they ever considered those of us that are allergic to the lack of free WiFi?

Look, unless I have about 12 access points all fighting for the same three or four channels all bathing me in delicious milliwatt microwaves I'll fucking die, ok? Without those wave-particles bombarding me from all sides I'll explosively decompress and take out everyone within about a thousand feet with me.

People think I don't leave SF because I don't like nature. They're wrong. I love nature. There's just not enough background radiation available to keep my highly energetic atoms sorted and well organized. I can barely manage short trips if you surround me with cellphones or a laptop or two running in wireless client mode. (Other acceptable RF sources include a DX'ers HAM rig, CB radios or simply a tuned coil and a spark gap. In my pants.)
posted by loquacious at 1:10 PM on June 17, 2008 [8 favorites]


Fad beauty products are the baseline of Seriousness now?

On the contrary, on their fringes they're a nigh-perfect example of using insecurities to sell pointless product. Slap some French on the label, maybe add an unnecessary accent or two, make sure at least two words per sentence sound "science-y" and you're set to charge $40 for a spray bottle of water.

Observe:
  • Magnetic Defense Complex (Rhodiola rosea, Thermus thermophillus) : reinforces the barrier effect, biological protection against artificial electromagnetic waves.
  • White tea: Anti-free radical, anti-intolerances.
  • Succory Dock Cress: increases cellular energy, reinforces skin's natural defenses.

Magnetic defense complex? Biological protection against artificial electromagnetic waves?

...Clarins ain't a small company either.
posted by aramaic at 1:10 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


If you encrypt the wireless then it can't cause allergies.
posted by srboisvert at 1:12 PM on June 17, 2008 [6 favorites]


You have to set it to at least 128. At 64 bit the allergens can still slip through the open microns.
posted by quin at 1:20 PM on June 17, 2008 [8 favorites]


Someone wanting to exploit people who worried about something like this could simply release a sunblock like cream which included some trace metals, and they could, as Pope Guilty pointed out, suggest that it had a Faraday Cage like effect across the body.

Which would also probably include a ground strap and spike.

Which would have the added bonus of actually nailing said people to the ground so they can't roam around freely.

"Why, yes, you can have total RF protection. Just step into this metal mesh bag. Now we'll lock you in for safekeeping, hammer this 8 foot ground spike into the ground. Right, then, all set. See you around!"


But all that being said? There have been a couple of recent studies that show that there is probably some brain interference going on with (in particular) cell phones.

Also, I've been up on a few telecom towers. DO NOT STAND IN FRONT OF MICROWAVE RELAY FEEDHORNS. (Or other high power RF devices.) They can actually cook you. Very slowly. I remember going all warm and woozy in front of one until I went "Oh, duh." and moved out of the beamline.
posted by loquacious at 1:21 PM on June 17, 2008


That sounds a bit crap compared to the "OMG I cooked my liver!" of engineering legend.
posted by Artw at 1:30 PM on June 17, 2008


Standing in front of microwave relay feedhorns cures hayfever.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:45 PM on June 17, 2008


Nonsense. Microwave relay feedhorns don't really exist.
posted by cortex at 1:50 PM on June 17, 2008


Microwave relay feedhorns can only be captured by virgin maidens using a girdle of pure spun gold.
posted by Artw at 1:56 PM on June 17, 2008


Santa Fe City Council unanimously oks boosting wifi. An interesting quote from the article:

The council discussed an opinion issued last week by City Attorney Frank Katz, who said case law did not demonstrate the city would be required to eliminate electricity from its buildings.

I live here in the City Different and it's very lovely when seen by candlelight (or luminarias as we call it), but I do like having electricity.

And speaking of allergies, I've heard that cases of electrical, chemical, contrail, et al, sensitivity go up around here in the early Spring. Does anyone know offhand the GHz frequency of juniper and grass pollen?

Santa Fe isn't any weirder than any other healing vortex. Gotta go, I'm late for my polarity re-alignment.
posted by jabo at 2:52 PM on June 17, 2008


Pope Guilty writes " That's cold, though, isn't it? I'm sure that at least some of these people truly do believe that they are sensitive to the stuff, and we should do what we can to help them. At the same time, no part of 'do what we can to help them' involves pandering to their 'condition.'"

Yeah, try working tech support for a small ISP in northern NM. Explaining to people that wi-fi uses radio waves, just like television and over-the-air-radio, does no good for some people, because you can't fight willful ignorance with facts.
posted by krinklyfig at 4:02 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


jabo writes "Santa Fe isn't any weirder than any other healing vortex."

Yeah, but the rent is higher.
posted by krinklyfig at 4:03 PM on June 17, 2008


Maybe I have this too. I chewed on my Linksys router for a while and I did feel kinda funny later...
posted by drstein at 4:22 PM on June 17, 2008


Pollomacho writes "Come on grandma, get up, don't you know that most strokes are just psychosomatic?"

It's all in her mind.
posted by Mitheral at 4:38 PM on June 17, 2008


Right on, Jabo, krinklyfig. Durned expensive to get your polarity realigned around here in Fanta Se. Roswell'll do it for free, and probably give you an 'abduction' t-shirt to boot.

Irony is, Santa Fe's already bathed in wireless:

CNSP
LCWA

In addition to all the residences, small businesses, coffee shops, etc.
posted by crazyhorse at 4:45 PM on June 17, 2008


Sebastopol, CA also blocked free public WiFi. It's absolutely hilarious.

I would just like to point this story out again in case anyone missed the fact that there is a place where this actually happened. in 2008. In one of the wealthiest towns in CA, not 100 miles from Silicon Valley. Ironically one of the influential figures is a radio personality who transmits on a powerful radio station out of Berkeley. Radio waves are far more likely to cause a human to "vibrate" or whatever as we're just the right size for a radio antennae.

I mean come on, you're allergic to electro-magnetic radiation?!? Do we have to turn off the sun?
posted by fshgrl at 5:30 PM on June 17, 2008


Food allergies affect about 5-8% of infants, but that drops to 1-2% of the adults, but large numbers of adults wrongly believe they are still allergic to foods they were allergic to as children. One figure I saw said that 20% of the population believe they have a food allergy.

Sigh-ko-som... what was it again?
posted by markr at 5:34 PM on June 17, 2008


Being allergic to wifi is no more delusional than being allergic to ragweed and pollen, etc.. Most of the world and the medical establishment are in the dark ages when it comes to the effects our emotions and unconscious mind have on our well-being.

Riiiiight. I suppose we're to trust an internet stranger with no credentials, qualifications, or expertise, in preference to the endless medical scientists who have published, peer-reviewed studies. Because, hey, the medical establishment is in the dark ages!
posted by five fresh fish at 5:35 PM on June 17, 2008 [2 favorites]


Are my western blot results psychosomatic too?

What adjuvant would you use to raise antibodies against WiFi if you wanted them?
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 5:37 PM on June 17, 2008


Bah. I see you've already all eviscerated the doofus. RTFT, Fish!
posted by five fresh fish at 5:41 PM on June 17, 2008


You people might've shamed Zambrano into a sneezing fit.
posted by CKmtl at 6:05 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


loquacious writes "But all that being said? There have been a couple of recent studies that show that there is probably some brain interference going on with (in particular) cell phones."

That has to do with the fact that cell phones need a strong transmitter to get to the tower. APs and wireless cards use far less power. Yeah, it's probably not a good idea to put a strong radio transmitter next to your head for long periods of time. I use a bluetooth ear thing, headset, whatever you call it.

Also, I've been up on a few telecom towers. DO NOT STAND IN FRONT OF MICROWAVE RELAY FEEDHORNS. (Or other high power RF devices.) They can actually cook you. Very slowly.

Very true. It's not as if there is no danger involved, but it's possible to be aware of the potential hazards involving technology, radiation, electricity, etc., without getting hysterical over utter nonsense.
posted by krinklyfig at 7:23 PM on June 17, 2008


I wonder how many of these people are getting checks from Comcast...
posted by any major dude at 7:52 PM on June 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


I was going to say the same thing happened in Mendocino, CA, but it turns out that the same crackpot led the campaign there before moving to Santa Fe to escape the evil Mendocino Wifi.

I wonder if he stopped in Sebastopol along the way...
posted by mmoncur at 8:04 PM on June 17, 2008


Man, that guy is some quality crazy.

I do feel sorry for him, though.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 8:37 PM on June 17, 2008


And I'm guessing I'm not really near-sighted either?

I keep trying to favorite this comment, but I just get a list of who's already favorited it.
posted by oaf at 10:22 PM on June 17, 2008


Oh, there we go. I managed to get close enough to the screen. Unfortunately, I flagged it as something also.
posted by oaf at 1:06 PM on June 18, 2008


Not to be the contrarian, but after a few seconds of thought, the first thing that came to mind was cyclotron resonance. I think 2.4GHz is a little low for biomolecule-sized resonances though...
posted by arrhn at 1:38 PM on June 18, 2008


Wow... like a few orders of magnitude off, if you assume the earth's magnetic field, 2.4GHz, and a ATP-sized molecule.
posted by arrhn at 1:43 PM on June 18, 2008


And that only seems to be applicable under laboratory conditions...
posted by Burhanistan at 1:44 PM on June 18, 2008


I'm allergic to neutrinos.
posted by oaf at 7:44 PM on June 18, 2008



Being allergic to wifi is no more delusional than being allergic to ragweed and pollen, etc..
Most of the world and the medical establishment are in the dark ages when it comes to the effects our emotions and unconscious mind have on our well-being.


Ah, yes, the next time a doctor gives me a medication with an opiate--codeine, morphine, etc., in it even though my files say IT CAN KILL ME-- I'll feel better knowing that it's all in my head. My swollen, red, itching head attached to my swollen, can no longer swallow, itching neck and throat.

I've erroneously been given these medications three times in my lifetime, twice after surgery, discovering the problem only after the symptoms manifest themselves.
posted by etaoin at 10:29 PM on June 18, 2008


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