Recent reports coming from disgruntled QMUL faculty are that the media team over at QM headquarters, (aka the never-ending, Escher-like hellscape that is the Queens’ Building), have released an “on the low” diktat, asking that any academically published works be named in a manner that would “boost both sales for, and the profile of, the university” and “appeal to a younger audience”.
Unnamed but definitely angry professors have confided in The Print that they are unhappy with the order, one lamenting that he “thought this [redacted] would all end when we joined the Russell Group”.
We super sleuths here at The Print, through many nefarious ways (which include asking nicely and providing an email address) have acquired the original email. Amongst pleas to make the titles “more approachable” and “hip”, QM have provided some recent examples of our own dear Professors’ published works and how they could be improved. We have the unedited list below:
Original Title: Estimating the Number of Subpopulations (K) in Structured Populations. Verity R, Nichols RA (2016)
Improved Title: Population-ception starring Leonardo DiSubstructure
Original Title: Reflections on the Political Thought of the Irish Revolution. BOURKE R (2017)
Improved Title: IRISH REVOLT??? REACTION ARTICLE AND UNBIASED REVIEW (peer review for peer review!!)
Original Title: 2D beam hardening correction for micro-CT of immersed hard tissue. Davis G, Mills D (2016).
Improved Title: Some Hardened Tissue gets Corrected in 2D. (Immersive)
Original Title: Carry Trades, Order Flow, and the Forward Bias Puzzle. BREEDON FRANCIS, RIME DAGFINN, VITALE PAOLO (2016).
Improved Title: 90% of users couldn’t complete this Bias Puzzle. Can you?
Original Title: Exploring plausible formation scenarios for the planet candidate orbiting Proxima Centauri. Coleman GAL, Nelson RP, Paardekooper SJ et al. (2017).
Improved Title: Predicting Proxima Centauri: what’s your planetary horoscope? Orbit patterns inside!
Noted in the email was the exemplar of Professor Bale and how he was “almost achieving” their desired result. They noted that whilst his titles were acceptably fun and quirky, they were still not attaining the required “clicks” and that Professor Bale needed to “bait” the readers. Here is the example they provided:
Original Title: So who really does the donkey work in ‘multi-speed membership parties’? Comparing the election campaign activity of party members and party supporters. Webb P, Poletti M, Bale T (2017) .
Fun and quirky, yes? This writer thinks so. However, this is what was recommended:
PARTY MEMBERS vs PARTY SUPPORTERS: WHO WILL WIN IN THIS MULTI-SPEED BATTLE? YOU DECIDE!
QM are optimistic about the future of this strategy. And our opinion on this change? Well, we’ll let you decide.
(Please note this article is satire, it’s false, the email is false, your life is false, we’re living in the matrix.)
Image: Reading Tom/flickr