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The preceding letters demonstrate how complex it can be to design a distribution policy that is effective, efficient, and fair. As our editorial demonstrated, the specialty journal circulation policy has been effective, and it is becoming increasingly efficient; it may not always be viewed as fair, especially by those who used to get a journal free and don't anymore. The AMA Physician Masterfile lists 85 specialty designations; we publish only nine specialty journals. The opportunity for disappointment is obvious.The problem with the former circulation policy from the advertiser's standpoint was that the specialty journals reached only that portion of the specialist audience who were AMA members, plus non-AMA subscribers, plus assorted AMA members in many diverse and sometimes unrelated specialties. Print advertising has become very highly targeted, and advertisers demand that a publication deliver the complete and specific audience they wish to reach. They will not support
Springer MD. The AMA Specialty Journals: Everyone, Including Grunts, Squeals Unfair-Reply. JAMA. 1990;264(20):2627. doi:10.1001/jama.1990.03450200034027