Passing the Baton
The outgoing editor of the JACR® reflects on how the journal has carved out a unique niche in the radiology community.
After launching the JACR® and spending 15 years at the helm, Bruce J. Hillman, MD, FACR, will be stepping down as editor-in-chief at the end of this year. The former chair of radiology at the University of Virginia talked with the ACR Bulletin about the journal’s early days, the evolution of the specialty, and his plans for what comes next.
Is it true that you didn’t want to be the editor-in-chief initially?
What I wanted was for the ACR to not have a journal at all. About a year before the College decided there was going to be a journal, I got called into an all-day meeting to discuss that very subject. At the conclusion of the meeting, there was a vote. Turns out I was the only one who voted against it. And I did that because I didn’t have the foresight to see the niche that the JACR now fills, which is non-clinical content that helps radiologists care for their patients, run their practices, and chart their careers.
In the end, I’m grateful I lost that vote. This has turned out to be a great job, and the publication has grown into something I feel very proud of and I hope readers look forward to each month.
What value do you see for radiologists using social media?
Virtually everything out there is a two-edged sword, but this is a real two-edged sword. The fact is, it does allow for the development of a community and relationships far beyond what used to be available. You used to have to know people, network, and meet in much more formal situations. So that part of it is good. You become more of a piece of a larger whole.
On the other side, you can sink an enormous amount of time into social media. It’s fun and you can persuade yourself that it’s very useful — that you’re building a network. But the truth is that an awful lot of what you read on Twitter and Facebook is really not worth your time, in my opinion. I think there’s a lot of junk on social media, so when you participate it’s important to know when you’ve reached the limit of its value to you.
You write an editorial each month. Do you have a favorite?
My single favorite editorial is from April 2018. It’s about how entertainment can provide a history that really didn’t occur. If you allow yourself to believe that you’re watching a true story, you can become an easier mark for misinformation.