On Thu, Apr 11, 2013 Russell Standish <li...@hpcoders.com.au> wrote:

>> Science and Nature cannot publish every manuscript they receive and they
>> shouldn't even if they could because that would defeat the entire point of
>> having journals. There is only room for a few articles so the editors pick
>> the ones out of the pile they receive every month that they judge to be the
>> most important. I don't see what else they could do.
> > That's rubbish. With electronic publishing, there are no resource
> constraints in terms of the number of articles that can be published. That
> is a consideration only for print journals.

And Nature and Science are print journals. Yes with electronic publishing
everything is available including the insane ramblings of every crackpot on
the planet, but if you want to get into Science or Nature you're going to
have to convince the editors that your article is probably correct and
probably important. And there is no reason in theory why in the future a
electronic journal couldn't be just as good as Science or Nature and in
fact I think that is likely to happen, but not if the journal decides to
publish everything it receives just because it can.

>>> The thing about editorial rejection is that it is based on an editor
>>> deciding that the paper is not worth looking into.
> >> Exactly, but you almost make that sound like a bad thing.
> > Yes it is.

That's what editors do that's their job, and if you disagree with their
decision you can read the article someplace else because you can be certain
it will end up somewhere.

> It artificially creates a scarcity that is not there in practice.

What scarcity??? No matter how bad the article is you can always put it on
the net at virtually no cost to you, and all 7 billion people on this
planet can read it if they want to, just don't expect the editors of
Science or Nature to say they think it is worth anybody's time to read.

>> Would you publish experimental results from somebody that you know has
>> performed sloppy experiments in the past showing that bees don't make honey
>> and never have?
> > I'd still send it out to peer review.

If I was one of those outside peer reviewers I'd be absolutely furious that
you'd send me something like that and would ask why you couldn't figure out
for yourself that is was crap; I mean, if you're the editor of the Journal
of Bees you really should know something about bees. And if yours is a
first rate journal I just don't understand where you're going to find all
those outside first rate peer reviewers to examine the huge pile of
manuscripts that you get every month, 95% of which are not just bad but
comically bad. And how long are you going to be able to keep those first
rate reviewers when you keep sending them insultingly bad articles? After
all, being first rate scientists themselves the reviewers have research of
their own to do and can't spend all their time reading the spam that you
send them.

  John K Clark

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