Thursday, June 08, 2006

A little something about scientific publishing

Manuscripts sent to journals get rejected all the time. It's no surprise, since it's unlikely that journals could even publish everything that's sent to them... okay, maybe some could. However, I just had a really frustrating experience: an editor who decided to make up his own reasons for rejecting the paper.

Despite favourable reviews from two referees, this editor claimed that our manuscript had previously been submitted to and rejected by another journal and that we didn't even bother to send a clean copy, just a re-formatted manuscript! Of course, my co-author and I have never submitted anything in our careers to that other journal! Thus, it does not appear that this editor even bothered sending any emails to check his facts, as there should've been no ambiguity.

I'm expecting an apology from the editors any day now. I don't care if they can reject it on scientific grounds, but to make up such an offensive charge is academically irresponsible and shows brazen indifference. I'm not even expecting them to re-consider the manuscript, as I'm not sure I want to publish in that journal anymore. This has left me seriously dismayed with the quality of editorship there. If they don't apologize to us, I may well fill in the blanks here with names.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't hold my breath for an apology. Those academic egos are just too big!