[Taxacom] Does the species name have to change when it moves genus?

Daniel Mietchen daniel.mietchen at googlemail.com
Thu Jun 21 14:54:17 CDT 2012

On Thu, Jun 21, 2012 at 9:30 AM, JF Mate <aphodiinaemate at gmail.com> wrote:
> Daniel wrote:
>> For instance, entries about these taxa in places like Wikispecies or
>> Wikipedia cannot use any of the images from the original description
>> in order to explain the characteristics of the taxa in question.
>> As a sidenote, the widespread practice amongst taxonomists (and
>> others) to publish composite figures is also something mainly based on
>> tradition, and it actively hinders reuses of the kind outlined above,
>> since most reuse scenarios (e.g. Wikipedia entries or blog posts or
>> even just illustrations of phylogenetic trees) would require single
>> images of a particular taxon but if these have to be extracted from
>> the composite one, they have a lower resolution than the one the
>> author had originally produced and often contain letters or scale bars
>> or other information in a way that is not editable (as a SVG file
>> would be). Such technical issues are the main reason why no images
>> from a taxonomic source have become a Featured Picture on Wikimedia
> Commons.
> Notwithstanding the fact that copyright is the main stumbling block to
> wider dissemination of taxonomic information,

> I find that, generally, it is
> journals rather than taxonomists who determine formats and file types for
> publication. Just a bit of proactive marketing (sending Wikispecies some of
> the extra media directly) would suffice. Who doesn't like publicity?
I concur that journals play an important role in guiding community
practices, and I assume that much of the habit of composite figures is
originally due to limitations in printing or to the pricing thereof
(e.g. colour figures are typically charged _per page_). In online
open-access publishing, such limitations do not make sense any more. I
am not aware of any taxonomically relevant journals available online
per open access actually requiring composite figures or forcing it
upon authors by way of pricing. If you know of such examples, please
point them out, so that the publishers can be contacted.


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