This Stack Exchange ranks as hands-down the most newbie-unfriendly, freedom-of-information unfriendly exchange where moderators actively prevent people from helping others due to some bullcrap Byzantine rule system. I've seen moderators trolling and deleting constructive posts/commentary - and the same crap gets re-elected at every moderator election.

Every real Westerner, who believes in true freedom of information, should be calling for the breakup of Medical Sciences Stack Exchange, splitting off a new "Medical Freedom Stack Exchange" specifically focused on helping people. Questions-first rather than asinine "hurp durp rules first".

Similar to the blatant censorship of the "opposition" on mainstream antisocial media, the situation on "Medical Sciences" stack exchange is broken and defective by design.

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    This post has an incredibly unproductive tone, and is completely unsupported by examples. A "medical freedom" stack exchange focused on answering personal medical questions, which seems to be what you are suggesting, would A) Not be frequented by legitimate physicians and healthcare professionals, because it would be against the ethics of their fields, and B) Therefore be as bad a place for medical advice as any other place on the internet. This has been discussed numerous times with a much more productive tone than you've offered here.
    – Bryan Krause Mod
    Apr 22, 2019 at 14:55
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    Criticizing "tone" is the last resort of those who have no valid argument, seeking only unconstructive means to shut down the opposition. Apr 22, 2019 at 15:30
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    Did you read the rest of my comment? I didn't mean the critique of your tone to be a critique of your argument: your argument can be easily critiqued in other ways (which I did). Rather, I meant is as a helpful suggestion for you to make your argument in a more constructive way.
    – Bryan Krause Mod
    Apr 22, 2019 at 15:32
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    This is a subject as old as the site, and the community decided long ago not to allow medical advice questions. The decision was nearly unanimous and has been re-debated multiple times, each time with the same decision. You would know this if you had participated in the discussions, or at least read them and understood the reasoning. This rant is your sole opinion. Unfortunately, the community doesn't agree with you.
    – Carey Gregory Mod
    Apr 22, 2019 at 17:06
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    As suggested below, if you want a medical advice forum then head over to Area51 and propose it because as explained here, your opinion isn't going to change a policy adopted by the entire community long ago.
    – Carey Gregory Mod
    Apr 22, 2019 at 17:06
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    Fact check against Fake News Carey: There's significant demand for splitting off a help-oriented exchange according to this meta post (medicalsciences.meta.stackexchange.com/questions/1065/…) where supposedly a quarter of questions here are being closed for being "off-topic", largely dominated by help and advice requests. So no, this rant is not my "sole opinion". The only reason why the "entire community" agrees with the totalitarian party line is that everyone else has been exiled or censored. Apr 22, 2019 at 17:43
  • This is one other example you brought up, which has -1 votes. There are quite a few meta posts with a significantly larger number of votes, and by a democratic process, this has been determined as side guideline. You don’t need to throw in totalitarianism and censorship, just because people don’t share your opinion and don’t let them be published doesn’t mean it’s totalitarian.
    – Narusan
    Apr 22, 2019 at 18:01
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    Except that the evidence suggests that a lot of people share my view and are also being censored to give the impression that the party line is unanimous and absolute. Apr 22, 2019 at 18:02
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    @user1258361 I strongly suggest you review the Code of Conduct and begin abiding by it.
    – Carey Gregory Mod
    Apr 22, 2019 at 18:03
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    Ah, yes. Veiled threats against peaceful opposition, the last resort of an illegitimate regime that would make Caracas and Pyongyang proud. Where's the international sanctions and condemnation? Apr 22, 2019 at 18:05
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    Please be sure to update your post according to standards of civility. And include a link to your Area51 proposal, as that might be right thing after all, if there is "high demand" for such a folk-wisdom/grassroots whatever SE // it might be a valuable thought that gives this meta-post a bit more reason/sensibility above & beyond "breaking up" (or did you mean tearing down?): just start your own schul, SE is free enough for such an idea to be tested? Apr 23, 2019 at 16:09

2 Answers 2


I understand your frustration. I am all for disseminating medical knowledge. That's why I studied medicine and why I choose to come here.

I too was frustrated with the lack of being able to ask/give medical advice on SE - at first. Quickly I came to understand why that is, and now 110% support the decision not to do so.

There is REAL HARM TO HUMAN LIFE that can come from giving/taking medical advice - especially when it's from people not qualified to give it, or outside of a patient-physician relationship. Check it out in bioethics literature.

SE's greatest obstacle is and always will be: who's qualified and who's not?

  • The SE model allows a high school kid's vote to be equal to a practicing board-certified physician. Which is right in many settings, but not in medical advice.
  • Secondly, on SE, there's no way to prove you're a qualified physician certified to practice evidence-based medicine. Anyone could claim to be a doctor and spread misinformation. It's happened in other online communities. We won't let it here.

Instead of programming something in for clinicians to prove their training/certifications and have a badge or whatever, SE decided that's a no go, and so even MDs and DOs etc have to post references here - they can't just wave their license or boards certifications to back up what they say.

Look at this post for more of what I've written on this subject.

  • But it's stated at the top of the site that it isn't meant to replace a professional's advice and so on. I think everybody who asks a question on this SE site either knows to take everything with a grain of salt and at their own risk or simply is a moron. At the very least, the focus of the moderating team could shift from closing every genuine question asked here (while there are some absolutely stupid ones that aren't closed, like one asking about injecting carbonated drinks into the bloodstream) to removing any answer that could potentially put the asker at risk. (1/2)
    – Rain
    Nov 11, 2022 at 5:18
  • Good answers would be the ones that say "based on what you said, I'd go see this kind of doctor first"; then the asker would receive guidance as to where to direct their search for a medical professional (not all parts of the world have easy and affordable access to a GP for that). Other acceptable (but not ideal) answers would be "I'd guess you have this disease, but please go see a doctor before taking anything". Again, the asker follows any advice here at their own risk. Bad answers (which should definitely be closed) would be "go take this medication", because THAT can be dangerous. (2/2)
    – Rain
    Nov 11, 2022 at 5:22

I'm sorry that you have been disappointed by moderator actions and the development of this site. We have heard before that we are user-unfriendly, and if you have any tips as to how improve the experience of new users, I would strongly encourage you to post them here. Something dire needs to be done about that.

Regarding your other point of criticism: This isn't supposed to be Medical Freedom Stack Exchange. We strongly embody censorship, if that's what you want to call it. This is not a platform where everybody can share their opinion. On MedSci.SE, your answers need to be backed up with facts (studies, books etc.), and you're questions can't be requesting personal medical advice.

This is a platform hosted by a community. As such, the community can freely delete any posts they like. We can't forbid medical bulls*it to be said, but we can delete it here, and that's what we are doing.

Health is too important an issue for every unsophisticated user to share their opinion. Your contributions are highly valued if they are within bounds, and backed up by reputable sources.

enter image description here XKCD

  • Actually there is a strong case for breaking up tech titans under antitrust law or regulating them as public utilities (see theverge.com/2018/9/5/17805162/… ). I see no reason why that shouldn't apply here. Apr 22, 2019 at 15:32
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    @user1258361 It's nonsense to think of "breaking up" a SE site. What exactly would be broken up? If you want to try a new Area51 proposal for a "personal medical advice" stack you're welcome to do so.
    – Bryan Krause Mod
    Apr 22, 2019 at 15:36
  • @BryanKrause I did a quick search and that's exactly what I had in mind (Stack Exchange Area51, proposals for new exchanges). Apr 22, 2019 at 15:42
  • "On MedSci.SE, your answers need to be backed up with facts" --- is there anything I can do when receiving answers not backed by facts? Aug 27, 2019 at 6:47
  • @DmitriZaitsev Yes you can flag them for moderator attention and they will delete the answer if after a certain period of time of no improvements were made.
    – Narusan
    Aug 27, 2019 at 15:59

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