[Taxacom] [iczn-list] Code Amendment discussions
fwelter at gwdg.de
Mon Nov 15 10:21:20 CST 2010
Code Amendment discussions.
There have been several discussion rounds (in BZN and the list
servers, iczn-list and Taxacom) since the Commission published its
proposal for the Amendment of the Code in 2008.
Since a while ago all arguments have continuously been repeated,
both those for and against allowing e-only publishing for
nomenclature, and proposals to solve the problem. I have not seen new
arguments for a while.
I also have not seen that people from the one side have to (or in?) a
significant extent been successful in convincing the other side.
There have been two main opinions, composed of many slightly
different sub-opinions, but with a clear line between both, not
Is this only my impression?
I have been discussing this problem with an editor of an e-only
journal who was strongly in favour of allowing e-only publication for
nomenclature. We did not agree in any point with each other, except
in one point. And we both agreed that this was the most important
point (so actually we agreed in two points).
The Commission has a difficult job, and we both had doubts that the
Commission has the skills to solve it.
What the Commission would need is people who have learned to work in
a political environment, who have learned procedures how solutions
can be worked out that will satisfy both parties of a subdivided
community. The skills of finding a consensus between two extremely
divergent opinions. It is necessary to find one solution for two
We both came to the conclusion that the election process of
the Commission is not likely to favour the selection of persons who
have this kind of skills.
For such a job it is certainly not necessary to have a Commission
composed of many persons who have learned how to promote best their
own interests and ideas. We rather would need people who are able to
bring people from the two most divergent sides together, let them
discuss and actively help them finding a proposal for a solution of
Then bring this proposal again back to the community, then let them
discuss again, and then see if something has come closer together. If
yes, then final approval by electronic voting. And then amend the
Enhancing the number of female Commissioners might contribute to
improve this situation. I am convinced there are people who have
What will certainly not help in this case, will be achiving a simple
majority or two-third majority vote in the Commission. We need a
solution that all zoologists can approve, including those with the
most divergent opinions, and this goes slightly beyond the
relatively simple process as outlined by Art. 16 of the Constitution.
I am personally disappointed that nearly nobody (except Richard Pyle)
feels responsible for informing the community about the current state
of discussion in the Commission, and about the next sceduled steps.
University of Goettingen, Germany
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