Quack Link

“No more stress-headaches, insomnia, hangovers or mood swings.” So read the headline of one of the latest pieces of spam to hit my inbox. Well, spammer, I’m interested. I suffer from chronic insomnia and the occasional hangover . What could this miracle drug be? I read on.

Oh. It’s not a drug at all. It’s a little McGufty you hang around your neck like a piece of jewelery. How is this supposed to relieve my hangover? Well, according to the marketers of the Q-link pendant (which is what this spam is flogging), my hangovers are caused by “…being blasted with radiation from work monitors, cell phones and giant electricity pylons, we’re being zapped at home by televisions, mp3 players and game consoles.” And all this time I’ve thought hangovers were caused by drinking too much. Silly me.

So how does it work? It is alleged to contain a “resonating cell, (nature’s microchip)” which neutralizes all these pernicious “rays” we are constantly bombarded by. Oh wait, this is wonderful! I can “go on using my cellphone, watching TV and working on my computer”. I’m so relieved.

And it must really work because Tiger Woods wears one. Perhaps it should come with a warning: Do not drive or operate heavy machinery whilst wearing this thing. But they still haven’t really explained how it’s supposed to work.

OK, we’ve got there. Here comes the science:

Tuning YOUR body to the perfect frequency

It works like this. The Q-Link contains a resonating cell (also known as ‘nature’s microchip’) which works to counteract the effects the tools of modern life have on your body.

Put simply, it ensures your body is operating at its perfect frequency – a bit like the human equivalent of a tuning fork.

Your body is made up of trillions of cells. Now, each and every one of these cells has a frequency. Unfortunately every time your body experiences any stress, all these frequencies go out of synch…

This is where we come in. Q-Link’s proprietary technology ensures that all these frequencies are resonating harmonically.

Wow. Just wow. I’m overawed, flabbergasted at the scholarly erudition of this. How can I argue against what you say when you haven’t actually said anything?

But all this is quibbling. Priced at a mere R1,599 I’d have to be mad not to try it. Who knows, perhaps I’d be able to drink as much as I liked without suffering the morning after consequences. I wonder how much that would cost.

Creative Commons License
Grumpy Old Man by Mark Widdicombe is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 2.5 License.

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6 Responses to Quack Link

  1. Con-Tester says:

    Okay, so that would explain why Tiger Woods got caught out doing those low’n’dirties of his: the Q-link he wore had all his cells oscillating with ruddy health in harmonic unison – so much so that he was literally bouncing around… 😉

    More seriously, caveat emptor is, on the whole, a decently workable principle, assuming that people are sufficiently driven to find out the facts. The popularity of a whole gamut of quack devices similar to this Q-link hokum strongly suggests that people have much more money than critical faculty. This would be fine if it was just a question of some fools and their money being soon parted, i.e. if the matter ended there. The broader problem, however, is that such fools infect and breed more fools, some of whom will glowingly testify to the stunning efficacy of such hocus-pocus, and so gradually and increasingly legitimise yet more magical thinking, stupidity and ignorance.

    Another question is whether this product comes with some form of warranty. If it does but the warranty covers only material or manufacturing defects but not effectiveness, then that revealing fact needs volubly to be highlighted – much like an insecticide that doesn’t kill any bugs would be a valid, um, target for a full refund, not to mention a barrage of ridicule.

    • Mark says:

      If it does but the warranty covers only material or manufacturing defects but not effectiveness, then that revealing fact needs volubly to be highlighted – much like an insecticide that doesn’t kill any bugs would be a valid, um, target for a full refund, not to mention a barrage of ridicule

      Quite so, but you’ll notice that the conditions that are allegedly helped by this device are all subjective, which means the placebo effect comes into play. I might say, having spent all that money on this thing, that my headaches are better, because otherwise I would have to admit I was taken for a patsy. I may actually believe that my headaches are better, too. This is exactly how homeopathy works. You cannot say you want your money back because it hasn’t helped your headaches without being able to prove that it hasn’t. If they claimed it could regrow severed limbs you could point to your stubbornly absent member and demand your money back in a loud voice and they would pay up.

      • Con-Tester says:

        Indeed, and the gold standard for demonstrating the effectiveness of a treatment for just such largely subjective ‘soft’ ailments is the randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial, or, more accurately, several of them conducted by different independent authorities. The pictures indicate that the “resonating cell” component is encased in the pendant’s body, so it should be easy to conduct a proper clinical trial using as placebo Q-link pendants that don’t contain the “resonating cell” part.

        I think that, as part of a warranty covering effectiveness, the buyer can reasonably expect that the vendor is able to supply on demand appropriate substantiation for his claims of efficacy. The trouble is that we’re far too lax about this and prefer instead to believe the effusions of a celebrity, a friend or a family member, and we’re generally far too eager to reject the idea that we can fool ourselves in literally hundreds of different ways when it comes to alleged treatments for ‘soft’ ailments. That’s why charlatanry of the Q-link kind positively thrives best in exactly that space.

  2. […] for my typing; in return you may call me Grumps—who provided me with first intelligence of the Q-link and the low-down on testicular cancer. Here is the start of her latest dithyramb, this time in […]

  3. more info says:

    In the great design of things you actually get an A+ for hard work. Where exactly you lost everybody was on all the specifics. You know, people say, details make or break the argument.. And it could not be more correct at this point. Having said that, let me tell you just what exactly did give good results. Your authoring is definitely highly convincing which is probably the reason why I am taking an effort in order to opine. I do not make it a regular habit of doing that. 2nd, although I can easily notice the leaps in logic you make, I am not necessarily sure of how you appear to unite your details which help to make the actual final result. For right now I shall yield to your point however wish in the future you actually link the facts better.

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