Ever wanted to host a science TV show?

WIRED Science host Ziya Tong reveals how she ended up where she is today, and the secrets behind her success. Check out her post to see how spamming, melting make-up, Jane Goodall, and Michael Jackson have played into her career trajectory.

(And if you’ve not watched WIRED Science yet, tonight Ziya will have a segment on the business of disease and direct-to-consumer drug advertising, using the example of Restless Leg Syndrome).

Comments

  1. #1 T. Bruce McNeely
    November 14, 2007

    This actually is good advice for pursuing any career. I think I’ll save it for my older daughter,age 9, who is currently undecided between acting and veterinary medicine.

  2. #2 Kevin
    November 15, 2007

    Basically, the Wired Science piece on Restless Leg Syndrome affirmed what I (and others) have been saying on this blog for months–namely, that this “disease” was “manufactured” by Big Pharma in order to increase profits and not to improve public health. The slant of the piece was decidedly anti-Big Pharma, in that it gave considerable air-time to a couple of doctors who are alarmed at the new convergence of medicine and marketing. Of course, time was given to the shills who are supposedly “experts” in the treatment of RLS. Regardless, anyone with half a brain could see that RLS is the product of predatory marketing and that such disease-mongering is decidedly bad for public health. As the two honest doctors noted, the drugs used to treat RLS are not innocuous and were originally designed to treat Parkinson’s Disease. Of course, since Parkinson’s is a small patient population, Big Pharma needed an new “disease” to increase the market saturation for these drugs and viola!…Rest Leg Syndrome was born. The marketing director for the drug company in the piece was a smarmy bastard. I wonder if Richard Jeffries knows him?

    Of couse, all of the hacks on this blog haven’t shown any interest in addressing this issue with honesty and integrity, which is why I was surprised to see Tara even post about this story. It was very unflattering to Big Pharma and since this blog is peopled with folks who butter their bread via pharmaceuticals, it was quite a shock. I guess Tara didn’t actually pay attention to the piece, or perhaps, it’s just another example of her inability to understand a valid scientific critique.

    Kevin

  3. #3 Tara C. Smith
    November 16, 2007

    Kevin,

    I suggest you read some of the comments over at WIRED Science from people who have RLS. It wasn’t a “disease” (why the scare quotes?) that was “born” via the pharma industry. Indeed, they had a product to market and a patient population looking for something to help, and they decided to mass-market it. Yes, this approach has caused (and continues to cause) alarm in medical circles, including not only MDs but public health practitioners, but I don’t see why that would surprise anyone that they showed that side of things. (However, nice framing–the “shills” who are experts in treating RLS, versus the “honest doctors” noting side effects? If only it were so clear-cut.)

    Additionally, although you doubt my ability to understand or pay attention, perhaps you didn’t pay attention or understand that this post was made before the piece aired (“…tonight Ziya will have a segment on the business of disease…”). After watching, while I didn’t agree with everything in the piece, I thought it was a good segment nevertheless.

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