Dandy Dime

Thomas G. Lammers lammers at FMPPR.FMNH.ORG
Tue Apr 1 07:56:27 CST 1997

At 03:11 PM 04-01-97 +0200, Francesco Santini wrote:

>Thank you Dr. Laferriere, to you and to your friend, for such a bright idea.
>To show to you my gratitude I want to suggest to your friend that in case
>she had any trouble to publish her descriptions on american quilter, there
>are many other possibilities, such as for example Mickey Mouse ( at least
>the italian ediction of the comic ), Superman or even Sports Illustrated. If
>you need some help concerning the italian  magazines that you might want to
>contact, please, do not esitate a second to write to me.

Frankly, I think this entire Dandy Dime thread belongs in "Tales to
Astonish"  (with apologies to Stan Lee).

The name violates ICBN Art. 30.3.  The Dandy Dime is clearly a
non-scientific newspaper by any reasonable definition.  Certainly, it has
been our "established custom"  (Pre.10) to refrain from  inaugurating
nomenclatural novelties in such venues.  The name is not effectively
published, much less validly published.

I am upset by the entire episode because it trivializes what we do.  Those
of us committed to ensuring a stable and orderly system of names for the
earth's organisms have a difficult enough time doing our job these days
without being preyed upon by loophole lawyers.   There are enough REAL
nomenclatural boondoggles out there, needing to be fixed, without some
mischevious harlequin creating new problems for us.  We take what we do
seriously and I for one do not appreciate  some nomenclatural court jester
with too much time on her hands and too much spare change in her pocket
having a laugh at our expense.   I'll be the first to admit  the Code isn't
perfect.  But it works pretty damn well if applied with a dash of common
sense, a little respect  for "established custom", and an eye on the
ultimate goal of nomenclatural stability.

Thomas G. Lammers
Department of Botany                     Classification, Nomenclature,
Field Museum of Natural History          Phylogeny and Biogeography
Roosevelt Road at Lake Shore Drive       of the Campanulaceae
Chicago, Illinois 60605-2496 USA

e-mail:     lammers at fmppr.fmnh.org
voice mail: 312-922-9410 ext. 317

"... library science is the foundation of all sciences ... we will survive
or founder depending on how well the librarians do their jobs."
                            -- Robert A. Heinlein

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