[Taxacom] I'm furious over article: On typeless species and the perils of fast taxonomy

John Grehan calabar.john at gmail.com
Mon May 9 22:54:00 CDT 2016


Life is unfair.

John Grehan

On Mon, May 9, 2016 at 11:25 PM, Stephen Thorpe <stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz>
wrote:

> Hi Geoff,
> I am rather more concerned with the general issues than this specific
> case. The general issues go very far beyond just Diptera. What irks me the
> most, quite frankly, is that if I try to publish anything, it gets
> nitpicked to death by editors and reviewers, but some other people appear
> to be able to publish any old garbage unchallenged! I would have hoped that
> someone from 14 authors, at least two reviewers, or the editorial team for
> the journal might have picked up on the, as you put it, "misrepresentations
> of the Code" and "obvious factual errors"! Journals tend not to alter
> manuscripts after they have been published in the online first edition
> version of record, and to do so could pave the way to even bigger problems!
> One worry is that people who are not themselves fluent with the Code will
> tend to believe 14 authors over the 3 original authors of the new fly, and
> so confusion and division will result. IMHO, publishers of scientific
> journals ought to steer clear of opportunistic opinion pieces like the
> present case. It is not science and it has no place in a scientific
> journal. I don't know what the solution is to the problem of
> ineffectual/lame peer review, or to reviewers who think that some authors
> don't need to have their submissions scrutinised much, while other authors
> do, and base this on political rather than scientific considerations.
> Cheers,
> Stephen
>
> --------------------------------------------
> On Tue, 10/5/16, Geoff Read <gread at actrix.gen.nz> wrote:
>
>  Subject: Re: [Taxacom] I'm furious over article: On typeless species and
> the perils of fast taxonomy
>  To: Taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
>  Received: Tuesday, 10 May, 2016, 3:00 PM
>
>
>  Hi Stephen,
>
>  You could write privately to the lead author, if you haven't
>  already (I'm
>  resisting involving him here by cc).
>
>  I don't see much wrong with the general sentiments expressed
>  in the
>  article. However the two sentences top of page 3
>  misrepresent the code.
>  Take them away and the authors are just expressing opinions
>  on taxonomic
>  practice. It may be possible to change an obvious factual
>  error as the
>  article is not yet in a print issue. Or the authors could
>  withdraw the
>  article and resubmit.
>
>  Geoff
>  ________________________________________
>  From: Taxacom <taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
>  on behalf of John
>  Grehan <calabar.john at gmail.com>
>  Sent: 09 May 2016 14:39
>  To: Stephen Thorpe
>  Cc: samarsha at uoguelph.ca;
>  taxacom
>  Subject: Re: [Taxacom] I'm furious over article: On typeless
>  species and
>  the perils of fast taxonomy
>
>  Stephen,
>
>  Why not write to the journal and volunteer your expertise?
>
>  John Grehan
>
>  On Sun, May 8, 2016 at 6:27 PM, Stephen Thorpe <
> stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz>
>  wrote:
>
>  > Hi all,
>  >
>  > I'm furious over this new article:
>  > http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/syen.12180/abstract
>  >
>  > They say: However, according to Article 16.4 of the
>  ICZN (1999), only
>  > holotypes of extant taxa should be housed in a public
>  scientific
>  > collection. Marleyimyia xycolopae is obviously an
>  extant species.
>  > Accordingly, its type specimen should be deposited in a
>  scientific
>  > collection ... In short, Marshall and Evenhuis
>  published a nomen nudum
>  > because their discovery is backed only by a photograph
>  and not by a type
>  > specimen.
>  >
>  > Art. 16.4 actually says:
>  > 16.4.2. where the holotype or syntypes are extant
>  specimens, by a
>  > statement of intent that they will be (or are)
>  deposited in a collection
>  > and a statement indicating the name and location of
>  that collection.
>  >
>  > Extant SPECIMENS, NOT extant SPECIES!!!
>  >
>  > The argument offered against the availability of the
>  name Marleyimyia
>  > xycolopae is clearly based on a gross misinterpretation
>  of the Code, and is
>  > makes the whole article by Santos et al. utterly
>  pointless! I am extremely
>  > alarmed that nobody out of 14 authors, at least two
>  reviewers and an
>  > editorial team from a supposedly reputable journal
>  could not catch this
>  > fundamental error before it went to print. Peer review
>  just doesn't work,
>  > it would seem.
>  >
>  > Stephen
>
>
>
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>  Channeling Intellectual Exuberance for 29 years in 2016.
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