[Taxacom] new nomina nuda (was Re: e-only taxonomic publicat

Doug Yanega dyanega at ucr.edu
Fri Feb 12 12:48:16 CST 2010

Wolfgang Wuster wrote:

>Just my attempt at wry humour in a series of interwoven threads that
>have seen us agonising over the right of free speech of "Calodema" and
>similar, while glibly dismissing taxa published in the leading science
>journals of our day as unpublished, due to their failure to conform to a
>procedural rule that is increasingly out of step with the reality of the
>21st century.

I think it's important that folks FULLY appreciate the tragic 
accuracy and import of Wolfgang's comment; it is indeed a sobering 
thought that serious taxonomists doing serious research for the 
advancement of science - and publishing in a premier journal - should 
be told that their taxon names are worthless, while those who are 
self-publishing inferior work solely for self-glorification have 
their names immortalized, simply because they had access to a printer 
and some paper. Objectivity, even when insisted upon for the best 
intentions, *can* be counterproductive. Many have argued that it is 
only by maintaining its pure objectivity that anyone respects the 
Code, but situations like this show precisely the opposite; it 
clearly makes people respect the Code *less*. I would like to think 
that the positive aspects outweigh the negative ones, but it's not so 
easy to dismiss, and I wish there were some easy way to query the 
body of the taxonomic community for their feelings on these matters, 
rather than just the handful of folks on these various mailing lists.


Doug Yanega        Dept. of Entomology         Entomology Research Museum
Univ. of California, Riverside, CA 92521-0314        skype: dyanega
phone: (951) 827-4315 (standard disclaimer: opinions are mine, not UCR's)
   "There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness
         is the true method" - Herman Melville, Moby Dick, Chap. 82

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