Monday, April 19, 2010

#3D "Samsung warns of 3-D TV health hazards"

Samsung's posts about the potential health hazards of 3D TV reminds me of the fledgling virtual reality (VR) market that consumers revolted against after medical experts hinted that head-mounted displays (HMDs) could encourage "lazy eye" in youngsters. Look for 3D TV vendors to start preparing their defense against lawsuits with similar disclaimers during the rest of 2010. R.C.J.

Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. has posted a 3-D TV health warning on its Australian web site describing a long list of hazards potentially associated with the technology. Samsung's posting, titled, "Photosensitive Seizure Warning and Other Health Risks," runs through a short list of serious maladies that can be triggered as a result of viewing 3-D TV, the worst of which is a stroke or epileptic seizure. The warning also describes a long list of symptoms to watch out for—especially in children and teenagers—including altered vision, lightheadedness, dizziness, involuntary movements such as eye or muscle twitching, confusion, nausea, convulsions, cramps, disorientation and "loss of awareness." Lesser evils that 3-D TV may cause, according to Samsung, are motion sickness, perceptual "after effects," eye strain, "decreased postural stability," headaches and fatigue. Taking breaks is advised as a quick fix for any of these symptoms. The warning advises people suffering from symptoms against drinking alcohol, watching when tired or watching if you are in "bad physical condition." The warning states that viewers can damage their eyesight by sitting too close or by walking around outside wearing 3-D glasses. The warning also advises against placing a3-D TV too close to "open stairwells, cables, balconies or other objects that may cause you to injure yourself."

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