Another blog post from David Tuller Trial By Error: COPE to BMJ Open: More Details, Please! - To sum up: The activities in the school absence study do not qualify as “service evaluation” by any standard. As this response from the COPE forum makes clear, the investigators should not have exempted the study from ethical review. Readers of the paper can see that for themselves. The editors at BMJ Open know it as well. Their efforts to pretend otherwise are unconvincing and will continue to damage the journal’s reputation.