Re: CryoNet #16306: UK situation [Charles Platt]

From: E. Shaun Russell (
Date: Tue May 22 2001 - 16:13:13 MDT

Hal Finney wrote:

>Frankly, I am amazed at how bad-tempered, rude, ill-mannered and
>unlikeable the members of the community appear to be, at least in
>their online personas. With such a small group of people, who face such
>overwhelming external threats, you would think they would recognize their
>common interests and band together for survival. Instead you see insults,
>feuds, back-stabbing, tremendous negativity.

Being relatively new to, but heavily involved in the cryonics community, I
have noticed this tendency as well, though am not sure I understand the
origin of the reasons behind the widespread vehemence. It may be as simple
as a case of differences in perspectives e.g.: X feels (or "knows") that
Y's methods will not work correctly. Behind the basic concept of
cryopreservation (or suspension, if you prefer), there is a vast body of
science that is fundamentally unprovable at this point in time. However,
some contend that despite a certain procedure's lack of provable
effectiveness, it works better than another procedure. Essentially, there
is a lot more than just faith in future technologies to rescue frozen
corpses --there is a very high level of scientific discretion which is
practiced by some, and apparently not by others. Since there is no way to
effectively "prove" that one is right or wrong, mud-slinging occurs over
the various theories and practices.

Of course, in my mind the mud-slinging is very unproductive and
impractical. I believe that the various organizations should essentially
leave each other to practice in what way they feel is necessary to preserve
the lives of its members and patients. Since there is no way to prove that
any one given method will work better than another, it is up to each
individual cryopreservation company to maintain the procedural integrity
that they feel is necessary to provide the best possible care.

I personally believe that the companies which have the most logical proofs
of the science of cryonics will be the ones who will do the best
job. Again, the difficulty is that those proofs are mostly speculative and
ultimately subjective to each organization. Mud-slinging doesn't help this
though, and for the field of cryonics to have any public credibility at
all, the slinging will need to stop.

I plan on fleshing out some of the ideas stated above for publication in
the near future.

E. Shaun Russell Operations Officer, Extropy Institute
                                 COO and Director, Kryos Inc.
               ~K i n e t i c i z e Y o u r P o t e n t i a l~

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