[Taxacom] Important note Re: two names online published - one new species

Richard Pyle deepreef at bishopmuseum.org
Tue Jan 26 12:56:24 CST 2016

Hi Paul,

> I don't follow this.
> 1) You start off by referring to Article 21.4, which deals with the date of
> publication, in the sense of the Code.
> And then you deny that the date of publication in Article 8.5.2 is intended as
> the date of publication, in the sense of the Code.  If it is something different,
> then it is pointless to refer to Article 21.4, as it cannot apply.

No, I did not "deny that the date of publication in Article 8.5.2 is intended as the date of publication".  Of course it is the intended date of publication!  But the key word here is "intended".  If I understood your position correctly, you seemed to suggest that inclusion of a date within the work somehow establishes a "window" of time within which all requirements for publication must be fulfilled, and if all requirements are not fulfilled within that stated window, the work cannot (ever) be regarded as being published.  If this were true, then there would be no need for articles that address dates incorrectly stated within the work. If I misunderstood your position, then I apologize.

> 2) If the Editorial Committee intended something different why didn't they
> put in something different?

I'm not sure I understand your question.  If you are asking whether the Editorial Committee intended Art. 8.5.2 to apply to the intended date of publication, then we are in agreement.  Where we disagree is in my (incorrect?) interpretation of your position as being that the date included in the work must be treated as an exclusive time window, within which all criteria must be met.  The Code does not say that explicitly, and implicitly (e.g., Art. 21.2, 21.4) indicates that dates stated within the work may be treated as incorrect.

> 3) The Preamble states "The meanings given to terms used in this Code are
> those shown in the Glossary."

Agreed; and the glossary defines the date of publication as: "the date on which copies of the work become available by purchase or free distribution. If the actual date is not known, the date to be adopted is regulated by the provisions of Article 21.2-7" It does not invoke the date as stated within the work of established a defined window within which the work must meet all criteria for publication. It does refer to Art. 21.2-7, and Art. 21.4 addresses dates incorrectly stated within the work itself.

The problem, of course, is that the glossary was not amended to accommodate the (novel) situation we have now where all criteria necessary for publication are no longer included within the work itself.  In 20/20 hindsight, we should have revised this definition along with the amendment to make it clear that the work becomes available when all requirements are met.  

So we now have a situation where there is some ambiguity in determining the date of publication.  As I tried to explain in my first post to this thread, the Commissioners have recognized this problem, and most of the Commissioners I've spoken with agree that, in the context of this ambiguity, the interests of nomenclatural stability are best served through interpreting the date of publication as being the date on which all requirements are fulfilled.

If you disagree that this is the best approach to addressing the ambiguity, then we should certainly discuss other approaches.  However, if you are trying to maintain that the existing wording of the Code unambiguously establishes (via Art. 8.5.2) that the date stated in the work itself defines a window within which all criteria must be met, and that there are no situations in which the date that fulfills the requirement of Art. 8.5.2 can be interpreted as "incorrect" in the sense of Art. 21.4, then I completely disagree.

> 4) Anyway, Article 8.5 states three requirements for an electronically
> distributed work, and you now postulate that the second of these
> requirements does not apply?

When did I postulate any such thing?  What I am refuting is your apparent assertion that the stated date within the work itself cannot be regarded as incorrect (i.e., the defined window within which all criteria be met).  Art. 21 clearly accommodates cases where the stated date of publication within the work are incorrect.

> As the Code is written, it is very explicit: the publication must state the date
> of publication.  


> And the Preamble makes it clear that, by definition, there is
> just the one "date of publication", that of the Glossary.  


> If it appeared on
> some other date, then the date of publication was not stated in the work
> (but some other date), and thus the work does not meet the requirements of
> Article 8.5.  

Agreed, except I would qualify it slightly to say "... then the CORRECT date of publication was not stated in the work..."

> It is not published in the sense of the Code.

Then why do we have Art. 21.4?  What circumstances would Art 21.4 apply to?  Are you suggesting that it applies only to works produced on paper?  If so, on what basis would you make such a claim?  If not, then what, exactly, are we arguing about?

> As to Article 21, it is not so much that it does not apply, but it does not bear
> on the matter.  Article 8.5.2 states a simple, direct requirement, without
> room for any qualification.

And here, I think, is where we fundamentally disagree. 

> Article 21 might be thought to bear on the issue of establishing if something
> did indeed appear on the date stated, but there is a logic trap.  Namely, if it
> appeared on another date, it was not published in the sense of the Code, and
> the whole Code does not apply (just as the Code does not apply to the latest
> pop song).

It seems you are putting a lot of words into the Code that are not there.

> Anyway, that is what the Code says, leaving out any unwritten parts.

At least we can agree on following what is in the Code, and not relying on any unwritten parts!

I'm sorry, Paul - but I simply do not follow your logic.  I may well be misunderstanding your point, but it sounds like you interpret the wording of Art. 8.5.2 as somehow locking some sort of window of time, and not allowing for an incorrect date to be stated within the work itself.  I would almost agree that one could legitimately interpret it this way (among other legitimate interpretations). However, because the wording in Art. 8.5.2 mirrors that of 21.2 (both refer to a stated or specified "date of publication" within the work itself), and 21.2 clearly accommodates situations where evidence is contrary to such a stated "date of publication", I cannot see your position (at least as I understand it) to be legitimate.


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