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March 16, 2011

Reflecting Emotion With the Science in Research Article Prose—Reply

JAMA. 2011;305(11):1094-1096. doi:10.1001/jama.2011.304

In Reply: I heartily endorse the stylistic changes Dr Baker suggests, which would give readers easier, and I believe more accurate, access to the science as presented. But I disagree with him about the undesirability of changing our approach to presenting scientific information. Change is always difficult, especially in an area where the rhetorical guidelines have been so long established and valued. However, noteworthy changes in this area have already been made. Some journals urge authors to use a more straightforward style. And authors are now required by many journals to disclose any financial considerations they might have so that readers can consider whether the content of the article has been influenced. This change is intended to increase transparency.