[Taxacom] Do rogue taxonomists need rogue publishers?

Stephen Thorpe s.thorpe at auckland.ac.nz
Sun Jan 31 02:43:57 CST 2010

The "thin end of the wedge" means that once you start placing restrictions (and 500+whitelisted journals is more than reasonable) on taxonomy, where will it end? Suddenly, the 500+ becomes 50, all funded by institutions with a molecular focus, and suddenly nobody is very interested your millipede descriptions any more ...

As an aside, I worry today about journals without websites which don't get abstracted by Zoological Record or anything ... there are some. I wonder how often they publish and what they are publishing? Also, one off books are still sometimes a problem in this regard ...

From: Bob Mesibov [mesibov at southcom.com.au]
Sent: Sunday, 31 January 2010 9:35 p.m.
To: Stephen Thorpe
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Do rogue taxonomists need rogue publishers?

Stephen, I also understand your concerns, you've expressed them very clearly. But

"I fear that taxonomic progress will slow down significantly if restricted"

is a very general fear and is not unlike 'thin end of the wedge' arguments. Just as many people on this list cannot imagine that there are egomaniacs out there who would see do-it-yourself e-only publication as a fantastic opportunity, I personally cannot imagine who would be seriously disadvantaged by a whitelist of (Doug Yanega's ballpark estimate) 500 print+online/online journals which would be the only places e-only publication would count.

This new 'universe' of journals which could publish e-only taxonomy would be just that: new. The old universe of journals and self-published works doesn't change. How is adding something new a restriction?
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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