Category Archives: science publishing

Hoax paper published in predatory journal purports to show that butt-wiping hand is correlated with one’s politics

A reader who shall remain unnamed sent me a link to a paper (below, link here or at screenshots) that is a hoax sent by the reader’s friend who also wishes to remain anonymous (I don’t know the author’s name). The journal is a predatory one, Psychology and Psychotherapy: Research Study, produced by Crimson Publishers. […]

In which a predatory journal wants my paper

Every week or so I get an invitation to republish one of my papers about evolution and genetics in some wildly inappropriate journal. These are, of course, the predatory journals that glom onto nearly any scientist, however relevant their research, to get money (you have to pay to publish in them). Here’s an email that […]

How trash science journals operate

Just to show you how these “garbage journals” operate, I got this email while I was in New Zealand, asking me to be a “deputy editor-in-chief” (i.e., one who has to solicit articles—something unnecessary for a high-quality journal to which scientists submit articles. The telling point: I am not a biochemist or molecular biologist! These people are […]

A new and legal way to read scientific papers, even if they’re behind a journal paywall

If you’re a scientist or a layperson who’s frustrated by the inability to access paywalled science articles (even if the research was funded by the public!), this is a browser extension you need. Called “Unpaywall“, it’s a free extension (go to previous link) Chrome and Firefox. You add it to your browser with just a mouse click, comme […]

A really, really bad idea about reviewing scientific papers for journals

The usual way a scientific paper gets published is this. First, it’s submitted to a journal by one author (usually the “senior author”), and the journal’s editor then sends it to an “associate (or corresponding) editor”. That editor then chooses two or three reviewers, preferably ones who are prompt, thorough, critical in a good way, and also have […]

Nature Ecology and Evolution begins publishing

This journal, one of the family of Nature spinoffs, has been in the works for a while, and I have great hopes for it. Headed by editor Patrick Goymer, who used to work for the Mother Nature, comes out with its first official issue next January, but has already published four online articles that you can […]

Nullius in verba, abuntantia imprimitus

by Greg Mayer The title of this post is recycled from an earlier one (which you should go back to and read), with a linguistic upgrade from reader Shuggy. The Royal Society, the oldest scientific society in the English-speaking world, is marking International Open Access Week by making all of its 350+ years of publications […]

A mini-Sokal hoax: abstract of physics paper written by computer, and in complete gibberish, accepted for conference on physics

In the famous Alan Sokal hoax, now twenty years old, a physicist got a bogus, post-modern paper accepted by the pomo journal Social Text. Now the tables are turned—sort of. This time, as the Guardian reported yesterday, a non-physicist hoaxed a physics conference by submitting an abstract, immediately accepted, that was written almost completely by computer. It […]

Readers’ comments on Nature’s accommodationist piece

On September 20, the prestigious science journal Nature published an article by Kathryn Pritchard, “Religion and science can have a true dialogue“, which I found not only lame, but inappropriate for a science journal (see my post here). Pritchard is identified as someone who “works with the Mission and Public Affairs Division of the Archbishops’ […]

Psychology studies may be more reproducible than we thought

On September 3 of last year, I described a paper by the Open Science Collaboration (OSC; reference and link below) that tried to estimate the reproducibility of studies published in high-quality psychology journals. It was a complicated paper, but its results were deemed sufficiently important to be published in Science. And those results were in the main disheartening: only […]