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How others are reacting to "Screening is Seeing" ad being pulled

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Dr. Val Jones’ Get Better Health site wrapped up our entire thread of posts on the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network ad campaign – from our original criticism through to Newsweek joining the analysis and on to ACS CAN pulling the ad.

On the Retraction Watch blog:

“Kudos to Schwitzer for having an impact and reminding the ACS that data must drive our health care decisions and spending.The episode is a good reminder that blogs can have an impact.”

Lots of Twitter action on the topic.

Mary Carmichael of Newsweek wrote:

“Wow! ACS shows real class. Kudos all round.”

Journalist Bill Heisel (a reviewer on wrote:

“Stunning example of pen > sword.”

Physician-writer Ben Goldacre of the UK tweeted:

“Overstated cancer screening ad gets pulled after excellent blog post by @garyschwitzer.”

Of course, there are also many online comments left by readers – after each of our blog entries on this topic, on the Newsweek site’s blog post, and on, which is also re-posting our work. Not all of the comments agree with our stance – although most do. Regardless, we need to have a better public discussion about what’s incomplete and unhelpful about vague messages like the “Screening is Seeing” campaign conveyed. I know that some parties within the American Cancer Society agree with me and I would look forward to working with them in trying to improve these messages in the future.

But, as Mary Carmichael pointed out, ACS – or its arm of ACS CAN – took the right first step by pulling the ad.

Now let’s take a deep breath and try it again.

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