[Taxacom] Formation of family names e.g. Diplogasteridae vs. Diplogastridae in Nematoda (and similar)

Stephen Thorpe stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz
Mon Nov 2 15:33:42 CST 2015

But what if there is a more or less 50:50 split in "prevailing usage" [Crikey I hate that concept!]? 
On Tue, 3/11/15, Doug Yanega <dyanega at ucr.edu> wrote:

 Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Formation of family names e.g. Diplogasteridae vs. Diplogastridae in Nematoda (and similar)
 To: taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
 Received: Tuesday, 3 November, 2015, 10:07 AM
 On 11/1/15 11:08 PM, Tony
 Rees wrote:
 > Dear all,
 > I am trying to reach
 a decision which form of the family Diplogast[e]ridae
 > in Nemataoda, based on the genus
 Diplogaster, I should use in my database.
 The Code is explicit:
 "29.5. Maintenance of
 current spellings. If a spelling of a family-group 
 name was not formed in accordance with Article
 29.3 but is in prevailing 
 usage, that
 spelling is to be maintained, whether or not it is the 
 original spelling and whether or not its
 derivation from the name of the 
 type genus
 is in accordance with the grammatical procedures in Articles
 and 29.3.2 
 It literally DOES NOT MATTER
 which spelling is "correct". All that 
 matters is which spelling, as of the year 2000
 (when this edition of the 
 Code was put in
 force), was the *predominant* spelling.
 The reason to specify the year 2000 as a
 cut-off is simple enough: if 
 spelling A was
 dominant as of 2000, when the new Code came out, then 
 spelling B was *at that point* no longer
 Code-compliant. Authors 
 continuing to use
 spelling B after 2000 were - whether intentionally or 
 unintentionally - violating the Code, and you
 can't "overrule" the Code 
 simply by violating it repeatedly until your
 error attains numerical 
 That's called "gaming the system", and if it
 worked that 
 way, it would defeat the entire
 purpose of that Article (and similar 
 Unfortunately, lots of taxonomists are
 completely unaware of Article 
 29.5 (and
 several other "prevailing usage" Articles that
 were only 
 introduced in the 2000 edition of
 the Code), and assume that spellings 
 have to be "corrected". People got tired of
 revisionist pedantry, 
 changed the Code to
 prevent it, and yet there are people who still do it.
 Doug Yanega      Dept.
 of Entomology       Entomology Research
 Univ. of California, Riverside, CA
 92521-0314     skype: dyanega
 phone: (951) 827-4315 (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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