For those facing an incurable condition, the Internet can seem to be the last refuge of hope. But how can you distinguish a trustworthy website from that of a huckster? "Follow the money" is an important key for deciding if a website is truly unbiased. Start by asking yourself who, what, and why.
Who. Whose site is it? Websites cost money. Who is paying? Check the “About Us” page. If the source of money is not obvious, use “Contact Us” to ask, “Who are you and how do you get your funding?” Keep that funding in mind as a possible source of bias.
What. What kind of information is provided?
- Is it a research-based news article? Does it cite research done in university or government studies? Is there mention of "randomized clinical trials"? These are the gold standard of science.
- Is it a blog? Is it one person's opinion, or are other sources included? What are the author's credentials? Are they reliable?