[Taxacom] Electronic Publications in Zoology

Richard Pyle deepreef at bishopmuseum.org
Wed Sep 12 05:06:44 CDT 2012

I will repeat an argument that I have been trying to make since 2005:

The only sensible path into the digital future, in my opinion, is to
de-couple the "legalities" of nomenclatural availability from the vagaries
of "publication".  This is what has been referred to as the
"Registered=Available" model.  Currently, for electronically published
works, we're following the "Registered+Published = Available" model; and a
third approach, championed by Doug Yanega (Published=Registered=Available)
combines publication and registration into a single open-access journal
through which all zoological names are formally established (somewhat
analogous to how it's done for bacterial names).  A brief summary of these
three scenarios can be found here:
http://www.mapress.com/zootaxa/2008/f/zt01950p050.pdf; but have also been
published elsewhere.

Just think of how much simpler the 5th Edition of the Code would be if we
could dispense with all articles related to the availability of published
works for names established after 20XX (which, given estimates for total
global biodiversity, applies to the majority of all animal species on
Earth).  Of course, long before we could take that step, ZooBank (or its
replacement) would need to be much more robust, with a much longer track
record.  Even though ZooBank has been in place since 2008, we've really only
just begun that journey.


Richard L. Pyle, PhD
Database Coordinator for Natural Sciences
Associate Zoologist in Ichthyology
Dive Safety Officer
Department of Natural Sciences, Bishop Museum
1525 Bernice St., Honolulu, HI 96817
Ph: (808)848-4115, Fax: (808)847-8252
email: deepreef at bishopmuseum.org

Note: This disclaimer formally apologizes for the disclaimer below, over
which I have no control.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu [mailto:taxacom-
> bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of John Noyes
> Sent: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 11:18 PM
> Subject: Re: [Taxacom] i4Life Call for Pilot Projects
> Dear Taxacomers,
> Given the new amendment of the ICZN to allow the availablity of
> nomenclatural changes in e-only publications it strikes me that the
> Commission could have taken this consideration further. Perhaps they can
> future.
> Consider a PDF article where neither the article in itself meets the
criteria of
> Article 8.5. nor is there any evidence that there is an identical printed
> It many such cases it can be virtually impossible to determine if there is
> printed version and thus the availability of included taxonomic acts may
> questionable. It would be very helpful if the code could include a rule
> any article published in e-format (PDF) MUST include an appropriate
> statement along the lines of 1. Where there is an identical printed
> "This article is also published as an identical printed version issued on
> 2. Where there is not an identical printed version: "This article is
published in
> PDF format only and meets the requirements of the International Code of
> Zoological Nomenclature, Article 8.5"
> This way it would be absolutely clear from any article published as a PDF
> whether it meets the requirements of the ICZN in terms of availability.
> Currently, in Chalcidoidea, about 10 taxonomic papers per year are
> as PDF's where it is not clear whether there is an equivalent printed
> It can sometimes takes some considerable time to check whether the
> current requirements of the ICZN are met. Given the recent amendment to
> the Code, I see this situation getting worse and potentially dangerously
> confusing.
> John
> John Noyes
> Scientific Associate
> Department of Entomology
> Natural History Museum
> Cromwell Road
> South Kensington
> London SW7 5BD
> UK
> jsn at nhm.ac.uk
> Tel.: +44 (0) 207 942 5594
> Fax.: +44 (0) 207 942 5229
> Universal Chalcidoidea Database (everything you wanted to know about
> chalcidoids and more):
> www.nhm.ac.uk/chalcidoids
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