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Life is good at TSACO… Our first article published on May 31, 2016, and we have now accepted 51 articles. It took a bit of adjustment for all of us, including authors and the Editorial Board, to know what to expect from open access (OA) publishing and to become acquainted with a new web address (tsaco.bmj.com) and submission process. Everyone anticipated that OA would provide for rapid times from submission to decision and publication. Submission to publication times are getting progressively lower and are now under 5 weeks; we plan to get them down to 1 month.
TSACO is intended to serve a global audience and we have received submissions from 16 countries. We publish on all aspects of trauma including injury prevention, global systems' disaster and mass casualty, orthopedic injuries, neurological trauma, new technologies and more. To date, by category, 44% are original articles, 24% reviews, 19% challenging cases and brief reports, and 9% current opinion pieces. I am pleased with the breadth of international interest and the journal content.
When we started organizing the journal with BMJ, we were not only the new kid on the OA surgical publishing block, but there was hardly anyone else on the block. That scenario has changed dramatically―there has been a proverbial baby boom, with more journals in this space than I could have imagined. The surgical community is bombarded on nearly a daily basis with emails announcing new journals and requesting membership on editorial boards. Many of the new entrants are classified as ‘ predatory journals’, whose primary purpose is generating revenue. David Livingston recently sent me an email referencing a New York Times article, ‘A Scholarly Sting Operation Shines a Light on ‘Predatory’ Journals’ (https://nyti.ms/2mQUwH6). It describes an academic sting published in Nature on 360 randomly selected OA academic journals. The article is both hilarious and mind-boggling. However, given the strong support of the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma (AAST) and BMJ to make TSACO a top journal in the surgical field, as well as the journal’s commitment to rigorous peer review, I am confident that we will remain above the crowd.
Authors are, of course, keen to publish in journals listed in citation indexes. TSACO is currently in the PubMedCentral queue. PubMedCentral will not accept applications until 25 articles have been published, which TSACO attained after the first 6 months of publishing. It is important to note that all articles published prior to PubMedCentral indexing will be retroactively available in PubMed after acceptance.
I would like to thank the many authors for their solid academic contributions to TSACO. I would be remiss to not also thank the Editorial Board and all of our reviewers for their excellent collaboration in our first year. They have enabled us to achieve rapid turnaround times, although providing high-quality author feedback.
Current activities are heavily directed to expanding global awareness and readership. Our Social Media Editor Jason Smith is working closely with BMJ to improve and maximize our social media footprint, primarily through Twitter and Facebook although we are investigating several other venues. AAST members are key to TSACO’s success. To that end, I invite you to visit the website frequently to browse our content. I would encourage you to sign up to have the e-table of contents (e-Toc) sent to you, so you are aware when new articles are published, and to join our Facebook andTwitter communities. AAST and BMJ want to support reader engagement, attract high quality research and strengthen the TSACO brand. To that end, please do not hesitate to contact us with any suggestions you may have. Life is very good at TSACO!
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.