outlets for alpha taxonomy

Denis Brothers Brothers at NU.AC.ZA
Wed Jan 30 14:57:12 CST 2002

IMO, the attitude of the editor cited below is grossly irresponsible. If
someone in his/her position 'publishes' a work with nomenclatural
content which is thereby considered as "not published" in terms of the
ICZN, knowing that this is the case and without warning the author(s) of
the situation, then I would seriously question the ethics (or lack of
them) involved. It is one of the duties of editors to ensure that
material published by them complies with the ICZN (or other relevant
Code). To 'publish' material which is automatically disqualified from
scientific consideration is foolish and a disservice. Of course, if
sufficient information were to be conventionally published elsewhere so
as to validate the nomenclatural actions contained in the electronic
publication (which could then be considered as providing additional
supporting detail), that would be a different matter.
I agree that this whole issue is one which the Commission must consider
further, but the sticking point is, of course, the requirement that
there be UNALTERABLE copies made generally and indefinitely available
from a specific date, so that workers can be certain that they are
consulting THE original publication. Without that certainty, the basic
principles on which the various Codes are built cannot operate.

Professor Denis J. Brothers
School of Botany and Zoology
(and Centre for Environment & Development)
University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg
Private Bag X01              Telephone: (+27) (0)33-260 5106
Scottsville                        Fax: (+27) (0)33-260 5105
3209 SOUTH AFRICA     e-mail: brothers at nu.ac.za

>>> "Barry M. OConnor" <bmoc at UMICH.EDU> 01/30/02 04:43PM >>>
At 4:10 PM -0800 1/29/02, Barry Roth wrote:
> Thank you for giving Taxacom notice about ODE.  From what you write
>(and from the web site itself), it appears that "purely taxonomic
>are published solely electronically (with extended abstracts in the
>printed-on-paper journal).  This would seem to exclude manuscripts
>to introduce new zoological taxa -- the ICZN requires hard-copy
>publication -- am I correct in thinking this?

There was a discussion of this issue at the Entomological Society of
America meeting in December.  It appears that several electronic-only
journals are willing to accept "taxonomic" papers in which new names
proposed.  One editor indicated that if authors and reviewers are
he wouldn't let the ICZN stand in the way of publishing.  I suppose
that electronic publishing is the wave of the future, the ICZN will
come on
board at some point. - Barry OConnor

Barry M. OConnor
Curator & Professor             phone: (734) 763-4354
Museum of Zoology               FAX: (734) 763-4080
University of Michigan          e-mail: bmoc at umich.edu
1109 Geddes Ave.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1079  USA

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