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March 06, 2008

Aromatherapy Study portrayal on the blogs

The Ohio State University aromatherapy study press release referenced in the previous post, in spite of the fact that it actually confirmed that at least one essential oil, lemon, has an actual aromatherapy effect, is being reprinted or referenced in various blogs as proving that aromatherapy doesn't work.

Here are some of the titles of blog posts and Main Stream Media (MSM) articles picked up by a Google alert for the word "aromatherapy" (I'm not doing links, since most of the items are the same article):

  • Aromatherapy may make you feel good, but it won't make you well (original Press Release Title currently at 892 hits--Click here to see the list) UPDATE: Wow! 13,100 hits at 5 pm Saturday UPDATE2: The number has dropped as of 3/25. Apparently Google refined the search.
  • Study Finds Aromatherapy Doesn't Work 
  • Aromatherapy can cheer, not heal 
  • No advantages from Aromatherapy? 
  • Aromatherapy Doesn't Fix Body, Study Says 
  • Aromatherapy Stinks - kind of - and Other News 
  • Aromatherapy's Effectiveness Questioned 
  • Two Aromatherapies Don't Work 
  • Aromatherapy Doesn't Work? 
  • Aromatherapy can cheer, but not heal, says study 
  • Does Aromatherapy Work? 
  • Doubts cast over aromatherapy in new study 
  • Does Aromatherapy Really Work? 
  • Study Questions Effectiveness of Aromatherapy 
  • Aromatherapy has no physical effects 
  • Do Aromatherapy Products Work? 
  • Aromatherapy Falls Short, Study Finds 
  • Experimental Evidence Supports Runner's High; Aromatherapy...Not... 
  • Aromatherapy is Woo 
  • Aromatherapy, a Bunch of foolery? 
  • Aromatherapy is Bullshit Malarkey, Sez Prof. Malarkey! (And He Should Know!) 
  • No Advantages from Aromatherapy? 
  • A whiff of scent is no cure for what ails you

I could continue for a long time if I go on to related stories that Google doesn't index directly. And I actually found a few benign headlines. Pravda, for example, has a neutral title: "New study evaluates efficacy of aromatherapy." Another article is entitled: "Aromatherapy makes you feel good, study."

These headlines are an indication that the authors of these blogs didn't actually read the article, or if they did read it selectively. It's a problem with blogging--you need to put a unique title (or so you think) and so you scan the article, throw out a title that reflects your first impressions, post the article, and move on. It's our policy on this blog not to directly reprint an article that someone else has already posted, without their permission. Particularly if we can link to it, which is usually the case.  But a lot of aromatherapy bloggers, or anti-aromatherapy bloggers, don't have those scruples.  Writing something original about something is hard work. Copying it and putting your name on something is easy--and it's also plagiarism. The several hundred newspaper reprints of the press release with the same title are probably not plagiarism, since it probably went out over the wire.

Anyway, this is what we have to put up with. . . .

Posted by Rob on March 6, 2008 in Aromatherapy, OSU Aromatherapy Study, Research, Weblogs | Permalink


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By the same token, our blog entry (which, of course, didn't get picked up by Google) is entitled "Bad Science - Faulty Research"

it's received a fair number of comments, for a newly established blog site.


Posted by: Marge Clark | Mar 8, 2008 9:13:19 AM

Could someone please help me? I just started studying aromatherapy and I can't figure out how I get the scents out of my droppers and empty once-used bottles! Should I use soapy water? warm water cleaner???? Help please!

Posted by: Beth | Mar 11, 2008 6:40:20 PM

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