Unfortunately, some topics just can't be discussed well in email, blog and website; they are drowned out by the efforts of those trying to make money. So it is with scientific anti-aging research and the vast sea of static produced by the purveyors of useless, all brand and no cattle "anti-aging" products. Just take a look at what is seen when searching for any sane, non-monetary, responsible discussion of anti-aging science on Google, Google News, Google Blog Search and Technorati - a blizzard of junk and nonsense. It's the same everywhere you look, a storm of short-termist profit seeking that destroys the primary utility of the internet for these concepts, making it impossible for diverse groups to collaborate, exchange ideas and build new organizations as a part of a serious, ongoing cultural conversation on anti-aging science.
Anti-aging is beyond salvage as a term for discussion; we should move on and use other language to describe the technologies of healthy life extension and advanced medicine to extend healthy life spans.
But I'm stubborn, and so kept at it for a while, to see what the balance of voices looked like. Ultimately I took my own advice and moved on to terms like "repair of aging" and "longevity science." You need a bigger foghorn to compete with the folk presently engaged in efforts to define "anti-aging," either implicitly or explicitly. The term has solidly come to mean Revlon, skin cream, potions and the art of patching over the cracks so as to look younger, while doing absolutely nothing about the damage of aging. The forgery of the mirror and makeup, the magic show in which we expect to be entertained while understanding that none of it is real.
Oh well, move on. There is nothing to be gained by trying to talk to that marketplace by redefining "anti-aging" to mean serious longevity science. That is a hard path:
If there really was a significant spill-over of sentiment and support from consumers of "anti-aging" brands to meaningful, scientific anti-aging research - or even between different "anti-aging" brands in the marketplace - I don't think we'd be seeing quite the same sort of hostile confrontation between brand-holders and scientists as takes place today. More to the point, I suspect that volunteer organizations like the Methuselah Foundation would be having far less of an uphill struggle than has been the case to attain their present level of success, and scientists backing rapid progress towards working anti-aging therapies would not be struggling to raise large-scale funding and fight conservatism within their ranks.
The hundreds of thousands (millions?) of devoted purchasers of useless "anti-aging" products translates into very, very few people who understand and give support to serious attempts to repair the damage of aging through modern science. We advocates for longevity science may as well direct our educational and awareness efforts to the population at large - there is no special leverage to be had in speaking to Revlon customers. If there was, we'd have seen it already.