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Will Stahl-Timmins: Almost impossible cancer spaghetti

9 Dec, 15 | by BMJ

will_Stahl-TimminsNICE guidelines, produced by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, are detailed, and sometimes lengthy documents. They are an attempt to summarise all available evidence on a health topic, supplemented by expert opinion where evidence is not available.

The BMJ has recently been publishing quite a few summaries of these NICE guidelines, aiming to provide doctors with more accessible, easy to use resources. I’ve been making a few infographics too – mostly static ones that people can tear out and stick on their consulting room wall, or print from the website. more…

Readers’ editor: A website needing more soft fruit

20 Jul, 14 | by BMJ Group

davidpayneWe like it when readers take the time and trouble to give us feedback. We’ve been particularly appreciative in the last two weeks as The BMJ’s new website beds down following its launch on 30 June. Some readers responded to the editorial published to mark the new website and the journal’s new name and logo.  Eighty readers replied to an email we sent out about the new site. Others used our customer service feedback form, and contacted us directly via email. Last week we did our first technical release since the new site went live, and we used it to tweak the design (based on your feedback), implement some changes we couldn’t squeeze in before launch, and fix some bugs. more…

Readers’ editor: Where has all the research news gone?

3 Sep, 13 | by BMJ Group

David Payne In March 2005 Ali Tonks wrote her first weekly Short Cuts column, a summary of nine papers published in the world’s other main general medical journals. The following year we published the first of Richard Lehman’s weekly journal review blogs. more…

Readers’ editor: Authors “ignoring” readers

18 Jul, 13 | by BMJ Group

David Payne Joginder Anand, a longstanding reader of the BMJ, wants to know how we can encourage authors to respond. In a recent email he asks: “Should the BMJ not make it mandatory for the leading authors of all articles to respond to criticisms or requests for clarifications?

My question back to him is how? What would be the penalty?

Dr Anand suggests banning further publication in the journal.

Would that work? I don’t think so. Many of our authors are busy clinicians or researchers. Often they intend to respond, but finding the time to do so is a challenge. We are delighted when they do, but acknowledge it isn’t always feasible. more…

Readers’ editor: Free pens and memory sticks

23 May, 13 | by BMJ Group

David Payne I spent yesterday at St George’s Hospital in Tooting, south London, talking to readers of the BMJ. The medical school library had organised an open day and a sales colleague had organised a BMJ stand, so I joined him to discuss our plans for the BMJ website with both qualified doctors and medical students. more…

Readers’ editor: Crazy eggs and the BMJ in a mobile world

30 Apr, 13 | by BMJ Group

David Payne Each year the BMJ runs an online reader survey. The survey is mainly multiple choice but there is also a free text question where we ask readers: “What single improvement to would make the most difference to you?” Every year the most popular response is “Make it free.” There are other recurring responses to the survey. In 2012 there were lots of requests for a simpler navigation and less clutter, a better search engine, and clearer access to article pdfs. more…

David Payne: Listening to our readers and authors

8 Nov, 12 | by BMJ Group

David Payne A year ago today the BMJ’s new website went live. We launched with an explanatory video and a dedicated email address for you, our readers, to provide feedback. This blog is a summary of the many changes—some big, some small—that we’ve made over the last 12 months. more…

David Payne: How websites changed newspapers

17 Oct, 12 | by BMJ Group

David Payne The editor emailed me this to seek my views about how to make her weekly Editor’s Choice more relevant to the journal’s online readers. 

The article gets posted on every Wednesday and appears in print two days later (all BMJ articles appear online ahead of print). Editor’s Choice helps busy print readers navigate that week’s issue, pointing out articles that have caught her eye as editor. more…

David Payne: Changes to scholarly articles

21 Mar, 12 | by BMJ Group

David Payne Should the journal article change, and if so, how? In this multimedia age, the workforce is increasingly populated by people who grew up with the internet, scholarly publishers anticipate the demise of the traditional article and spend lots of time rethinking how best to present the information it contains. more…

David Payne: redesign feedback week 6

19 Dec, 11 | by BMJ Group

David Payne The redesigned is now more than a month old and this last blog before Christmas is to update readers about the latest feedback and what we are doing about it.

First, citations. A colleague spotted that some older articles were missing page numbers in the citation line. This is now fixed.

Second, section pdfs. Before the new site went live on November 8 most recent articles had two pdf views – one of the article, and second one showing it in its print issue section (this obviously only applies if the article appeared in print, but most still do). more…

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