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Who is he? He is an ER doctor who used to post on POL and had a touch of clinical acumen, but it was overwhelmed by attacks on virtually everyone, mostly radiologists, lawyers, and any retired docotrs. It was a strain for me to read his posts, because there was so much anger, and so much myopia. I guess some were amused by his wildness. But someone once posted his real address on the site, and he had to beg the POL administrators to remove it because he was harrassed terribly. I could see physical violence happening to him, it was that bad.
He used to rant at anyone who posted anonymously, too. And demanded evryone come out from behind their mask.
when POL was bought by Medscape, Medscape, mostly Dr. Zatz decided anonymous posting led to bad things, even though he, when he worked at POL created it. They essentially agreed with ole Harvey.
but the inability to post anonymously keeps anyone from getting advice on med mal issues, and other issues where you can't give your name. e.g., "I have HIV, what do I do now?" type stuff. People like Harvey were called "flamers." They even had one thread where an anonymous poster's true motivations were analyzed. She was a divorced anesthesiologist with children. She defended herself well, but it did often get wild.
Essentially the lack of anonymous posting killed POL as it morphed to Medscape. And of course, members of the public could also post on Medscape forums. But then Medscape fixed that, but hadn't the mechanism to identify new members who were doctors, so Web MD paid $2 Million for POL, and it died. Sad because it served a real need. You really could get real help, like a curbside consult from the world of doctors.
but Harvey is lost in the shuffle. Personally, I hope he never returns. These issues are hard enough without dealing with a child yelling and screaming.
Twoaonea, that history was really helpful. It helps this newcomer understand some of the polarized behavior seen on this and other sites. I hope I have the sense enough to abandon this site when things get wild.
Essentially the lack of anonymous posting killed POL as it morphed to Medscape. And of course, members of the public could also post on Medscape forums. But then Medscape fixed that, but hadn't the mechanism to identify new members who were doctors, so Web MD paid $2 Million for POL, and it died.
Well, I can't tell you the exact number cause I don't know. But it was a lot. I was in the first 100 docs to sign up back in 1992, I think it was. It was originally proprietary software sponsored by Pfizer, but then they went web based, got sold several times, and eventually in March was bought by WebMD for $2 Million. Since then WebMD has become known as WMD, Weapons of Mass Destruction, to POLers.
I learned about things there that simply I never could have learned anywhere else. From the pool of doctors that were there. That is except from Harvey Louzon, MD who simply reminded me of the fact that all doctors have personalities.
I recognize a lot of names here, and so I think this is a great site. Trouble is that there are four of them now, and not one. No, don't ask, I do not want to disseminate it.
As you can see I joined in April like everyone else. Leaving POL was a real downer. I went there every day. Posted rarely, but each time thoughtfully, and with love for the best group of people I've ever found, doctors.
I have a program that tells me how trafficked any one site is. This one, for example is 601,189 on the web. Medscape is about 3300. Emedicine.com is about 5200. POL was about 66,000.
So it was a lot. CNN is 32. Yahoo is number one. (I knew you'd ask). Merckmedicus 114,654.
There are now an uncountable number of websites, and so over 2 Million doesn't register. There are more websites on the web than there are people in the world! No kidding. NO search engine has more than 33% of the websites, because checking all possible combinations, and allowing for coming and going, makes 33% about all anyone can do. Even if computers run all day and night. There are over 400,000 search engines.
So POL was a big buy for WebMD, killed it for us doctors, and shows how big equates to stupid. I had much dialogue with them as I know lots of them, and there just is no convincing a New York know-it-all that they don't know it all. And Dr. Zatz, MD is an internist. He's the titular head of Medscape. (Sorry, Steve, I mean no disrespect. You are a great guy.)
Concerned? Well, I guess I would be if I paid $2 Million for something. But what can they do? They do not understand customer relations, in my opinion.
I wish I could share with you the stupid responses they gave me to 1. there must be anonymous posting, and 2. you have to keep all non doctors out.
I had a non doctor employee of their's Nick Altebrando, who plays guitar in NY bars in the evening (nothing against guitar players, one of my best friends does, too, play in NY bars), so I guess this is his day job, tell me that I was too arrogant to even talk to.
Steve Zatz, MD got a copy of his letter and I was told he was reprimanded, but "he's really a great employee."
They need a lesson in customer relations, I'll tell you that.
So concerned, heck, I dont' know. I thought at one time that they just bought it to put a competitor out of business.
JJ there are plenty of shortcuts built into the software to make surfing easier. You can either Select New Posts which lists all the posts since your last visit, and View First Unread which takes you to the last post you read in each thread.
Using this method cuts out a lot of searching, secondly, you can set each forum to only display threads from the last day, 2 days, week, 10 days... depending on how often you visit.
I agree the software takes getting used to, but when you do, you very quickly realize it is far superior to any other out there.
The searching capabilites also make it very handy,as well as the ability to subscribe to threads, have emails notify you at predetermined intervals
Robodoc, this was bound to happen with the demise of POL;
but, 'look on the brighter side, what if there were no alternatives, half the threads on Medscape 2 months ago were whinning about one thing or another; FYI, the field just got busier with another site doctorsunite.com