John Walker's Electronic House

Quackometer Taken Down, Put Back Up Again

by on Feb.21, 2008, under The Rest

Here’s a quite remarkable story. Quackometer is a site that covers bad science – the dubious or downright nonsensical claims made by those professing “alternative medicine”. It’s been doing a splendid job for the last couple of years. Recently it posted a story about “Professor Joseph Chikelue Obi MD MPH FRIPH FRCAM FACAM MICR”, covering his various documented moments of madness, to which the good doctor replied with a mystifying lawsuit.

Quackometer’s pathetic hosts, Netcetera (“passionate about hosting”), responded to the empty threat by pulling the entire site offline, permanently. A mealy-mouthed excuse about violating terms and some such rubbish is all they’ve given as explanation, because of course their only reason was cowardly stupidity, and a complete lack of interest in protecting the rights of freedom of information.

Professor Obi, as he likes to call himself, was fired from South Tyneside General Hospital for serious professional misconduct, and had his license to practise medicine in the UK revoked. A trustworthy man to be sure.

He now claims to be the boss of the “Royal College of Alternative Medicine”, which is a near-fictional entity, not existing beyond a website, and so many of those letters after his name are of dubious origin, while many others are cheaply bought titles from various worldwide websites. Delightfully, he is alleged to have conned an old lady out of her life savings since being fired for allegedly failing to treat a heart attack patient, innappropriate treatment of psychiatric patients, and abusive behaviour toward colleagues. He’s all-round the sort of guy to which you’d want an ISP to immediately capitulate, yes indeed.

Gimpy’s Blog provides an excellent summary of the recent closure of the site (from which much of the above has been cribbed), and a previous post details where you can find copies of the articles removed from Quackometer, for instance here.

Fortunately, the good people at Positive Internet, who host this blog, as well as Rock, Paper, Shotgun, have stepped in to provide hosting for Quackometer, which should be online again shortly. Positive have a history of stepping in to offer hosting for sites that have been shut down either by cowardly ISPs, or for sites that deserve support but cannot afford excessive hosting charges. The wonderful Bad Science site is a previous rescue of theirs.

“Professor” Obi has duly threatened Positive in his latest blog post.

His blog is well worth a read. It’s very difficult to believe it’s not a spoof, so hilarious is its composition. For Obi, any who disagree with him, or mention his tawdry past, are automatically racists. For Obi, “victory” means saying, “I’m going to sue you!” to anyone who observes his history. For Obi, the only logical course of action is to describe himself as “Leader of the Opposition against the General Medical Council” – a clearly evil body as they dared to fire him for repeated counts of serious misconduct.

Phrases like, “Speaking in Belfast , at the end of a Private Inspection Tour of an Alternative Medicine Facility , the Eminent Black British Human Rights Crusader delightfully said…” are just so fun. So, after he walked around someone’s back room where they wave crystals, the disgraced former doctor said to the other guy in the room…

Seriously, have a read. If it’s a spoof, then I’ve been fooled. But the writing style matches that of his own nutcase website, implying something this ridiculous might actually be real.

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