[Taxacom] Do rogue taxonomists need rogue publishers?

Richard Zander Richard.Zander at mobot.org
Tue Feb 9 11:30:23 CST 2010

Wow, what a thread! It seems to me (everybody else has an opinion, so
why not) that EOL and Wikipedia are populist attempts to meld the public
and scientists into one Team. Lot's of good stuff on each, but I'm
writing about the Problems.

There is an ism called corporatism that was originally used by guilds in
syndicalist political movements to represent in one category everyone
who contributed to a particular work field. Then the Roman Church used
corporatism to help democratize things among third-world nations and
make common cause for the rich and poor alike. Then Mussolini used it to
deal with professions and other possible complainers and bury them in
larger political categories. Then modern CEOs used corporatism in the
guise of Teamwork to destroy internal professional and other powerblocs
in a business (my last job split the curators up into different Teams:
the Experience Team, etc. Then fired most of them, replacing them with
other, less expensive Team members.) 

It seems to me that scientific names generated by professionals and
well-regarded amateurs should be presented to various user groups in
variously protected ways, not subject to immediate feedback including
major editing from non-professionals. A stepwise system with controlled
feedback might solve many problems. We HAD a good system. Why can't this
be modeled online? I think it's a corporatism phenomenon, and as usual,
the dedicated grunts in the field don't profit. 

This is not a question of elitism, but of respect for the results of
research programs and our legacy to the future.

-----Original Message-----
From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
[mailto:taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of Bob Mesibov
Sent: Monday, February 08, 2010 5:49 PM
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Do rogue taxonomists need rogue publishers?

Stephen, I think it's a preprint. The final version will be on the
Calodema website.

My point in spreading this story is to remind Taxacomers that under the
proposed ICZN amendments, e-only published names will be available with
pathetically simple requirements: a brief description, a promise to put
the holotype somewhere safe and a posting of a PDF of this to libraries,
museums and archiving institutions. Hawkeswoods and Makhans of the world

IMO the Commission is proposing to act like an Internet service provider
that has no spam filtering whatsoever on its mail servers. 'All we do is
organise mail delivery. It's up to the subscriber to delete the spam';
i.e., it's up to the taxonomic community to deal with any resulting
flood of junk. How many others on this list think that what the
Commission is proposing is irresponsible?
Dr Robert Mesibov
Honorary Research Associate
Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery, and
School of Zoology, University of Tasmania
Home contact: PO Box 101, Penguin, Tasmania, Australia 7316
(03) 64371195; 61 3 64371195
Website: http://www.qvmag.tas.gov.au/mesibov.html


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