Weekend reads: Peer review abuse, a journal that will print anything for $1,200, PubPeer faces legal threats
- “This is an outrageous abuse of the peer review process,” says Peter Brown of the publication of a paper in PNAS claiming that the “hobbit man” was actually a modern human with Down’s syndrome.
- A respected cardiology journal has changed owners, and now “they’ll print anything — even a garbled blend of fake cardiology, Latin grammar and missing graphs,” Tom Spears of The Ottawa Citizen found out.
- Post-publication peer review site PubPeer has been threatened with legal action, although details are scant. We’ve of course faced some of those ourselves.
- “What would happen if scientists stopped trusting each other?” asks Neuroskeptic.
- Jeffrey Beall investigates whether a journal has been hijacked, or just changed its name.
- “More than 1,100 laboratory incidents involving potential bioterror germs were reported to [U.S.] federal regulators during 2008 through 2012,” Alison Young of USA Today reports. “Details of what happened are cloaked in secrecy.”
“Many results cannot be reproduced because of the changes in the initial conditions between the experiments.” Researchers model reproducibility.
- A 20th-century scientific error “derailed the search for exoplanets, and extraterrestrials, for decades,” io9′s Mark Strauss reports.
- The trial of confessed HIV vaccine research fraudster Dong-Pyou Han has been delayed until September 29.
- Want to master fraud and corruption? Here’s how.
- “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention scientist who accidentally leaked H5N1 into a benign strain of avian influenza may have been rushing off to a meeting,” Jef Akst of The Scientist reports.
- “Journals may have to adapt and become more like blogs,” argues Skeptical Scalpel.
- How hard did CNN, The Washington Post, and Time really look for evidence of Fareed Zakaria’s plagiarism?
- The University of Minnesota is happy to give Carl Elliott records of patient deaths in clinical trials, as long as he ponies up nearly $10,000.
- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is muzzling its science advisers, say journalism groups and others.
- Thomson Reuters told Nikhil Pahwa that “unless we write back to them in 14 days denying them the use of our articles, they will take the lack of refusal, as an indication of consent to use them.” They later said the letter had been sent to him in error.
- “A genetic testing firm accused of infringing upon Myriad Genetics’s gene patents fights back in an attempt to wipe other patents out,” The Scientist‘s Kerry Grens reports.
- In The New Yorker, Michael Specter reports on “an activist’s controversial crusade against genetically modified crops.”
- Jonathan Eisen isn’t happy about Science‘s registration requirements for papers that are advertised as freely available.
- Zen Faulkes and Erin McKiernan don’t like the Society for Neuroscience’s embargo policies.
- Debora Weber-Wulff has a roundup of plagiarism news from Russia, France, and Germany.
- How to finish that PhD in 12 steps.
- “Microbiome science needs a healthy dose of scepticism,” says William Hanage in Nature.
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