|Style over substance|
I-Doser is "the industry leader in binaural brainwave audio doses to powerfully alter your mood".
Exactly. I-Doser is a piece of software that claims, via the use of specially-designed sounds, to be able to alter your mood in the same manner that drugs, legal or otherwise, can. Like homeopathy, the benign nature of the prescription results in no side effects (with the possible exception of hearing loss if listened to at max volume). The I-Doser site contains numerous testimonies of people claiming to be positively affected by listening to the "doses", which are arranged in multiple categories such as "stimulant" and "sexual" and available for around $4 each.
The product really is no different than countless other self-help tapes that claim to make you thin, or be able to fluently speak foreign languages just by sticking a pair of headphones on and falling asleep. The major difference, however, is that while most other forms of tapes just claim to alter your mind "subliminally", I-Doser marketing states that it will actively "alter your brainwaves" to match the conditions brought about by "numerous drugs". Sample audio files are available to preview on their website so you can test it out for yourself.
I-Dosing in the media
There have been claims that school students were getting high from "I-dosing." However, medical experts are skeptical about the effects of I-dosing. A small study showed that there was no entrainment of brain waves from listening to binaural beats.
Despite the lack of scientific evidence, I-doser continues to broaden its fan base among youth. A single look around the I-doser forum shows thousands of users sharing their experiences often followed by excited responses. A writeup on a third party website even describes an experience where the user visited Hell, saw demons, and was scared for days. But did they really? There is even a recording for sale on the I-doser website that claims to bring color back to your gray hair by changing brain frequency. The continued consumption of these wacky products by the eccentric middle class and the youth that don't know any better keeps this market growing. When a physical substance is put on the market, manufacturer claims often have to meet strict government standards for consumer protection. Not in the case of I-doser; this company can claim any benefit via your headphones and it is met with praise from the young and naive.
- Can 'digital drugs' get you high? by Katie Connolly (22 July 2010) BBC News.
- Turn on, tune in and get high on ‘audio drugs’? by Bridget Carey (Originally published June 24, 2010 at 7:00 pm Updated June 24, 2010 at 9:01 pm) Seattle Times.
- Researcher Dispels Notion Music Can Get Kids High (July 14, 20103:00 PM ET) NPR: All Things Considered.
- I-Doser Review: Gates of Hell (Archive.org August 10, 2013)