23andMe Poem: Enough to make you spit?

A reader (beerbelliesuk) just left a comment on one of my posts. It’s a poem about 23andMe, the Google-sponsored genetic company. I have no idea who wrote it but is quite ironic.

Update: The poem belongs to Helen Wallace who wrote it while she was stuck on a train a few weeks ago.


Psst, you want eternal life?
On Sale Now: from Sergey and his wife.
All you need to do is pay
For them to own your DNA.

In return they’ll give you back
Information that you lack
Genetic risk for this and that:
You won’t know what you’re looking at.

Some of it will be plain wrong
Or else you knew it all along:
But you can bet they’ll make it pay
Now they have your DNA.

If you’re at risk of getting fat
You’ll soon be clicking on an ad:
There’s always something you can buy
To treat you so you will not die.

It’s personalised marketing:
The latest trend, the hottest thing.
If what they tell you isn’t true
Read the disclaimer: more fool you.

Then, when you spend your precious time
Searching journals, all online
The more you look, the more you’ll learn
How long you live depends on what you earn.

Suddenly you’ll understand
The science behind the business plan,
The secret of a longer life:
Oh yes, they have it, Sergey and his wife.

Remind me now, why did you pay
For them to own your DNA?
When you start to think it through,
Shouldn’t they be paying you?