A Serbian Sokal? Authors spoof pub with Ron Jeremy and Michael Jackson references

What do porn star Ron Jeremy, Max Weber and Michael Jackson have in common?  Very little — except the three names appear in the list of references for a recent hoax paper by a group of Serbian academics who, fed up with the poor state of their country’s research output, scammed a Romanian magazine by … Continue reading A Serbian Sokal? Authors spoof pub with Ron Jeremy and Michael Jackson references

Weekend reads: Stem cell trial halted; Nazi doctors in the literature; is it OK to cite a paper you haven’t read?

Before we present this week’s Weekend Reads, a question: Do you enjoy our weekly roundup? If so, we could really use your help. Would you consider a tax-deductible donation to support Weekend Reads, and our daily work? Thanks in advance. The week at Retraction Watch featured the story of how an editor solved a mystery about … Continue reading Weekend reads: Stem cell trial halted; Nazi doctors in the literature; is it OK to cite a paper you haven’t read?

Publisher retracts “conceptual penis” hoax article

File this under “not a surprise.” After the authors of a paper entitled “The conceptual penis as a social construct” confessed it was a hoax immediately after publication, the publisher has retracted it. The notice is sparse: This article has been retracted by the publisher. For more information please see the statement on this article. … Continue reading Publisher retracts “conceptual penis” hoax article

Publisher blames bad choice of reviewer for publication of hoax paper on penis as “social construct” 

Less than a week after publishing a much-discussed hoax paper, a scholarly publisher has acknowledged that it had chosen reviewers for the paper whose “expertise did not fully align with this subject matter.” The subject matter: that the penis should not be considered an anatomical organ, but more as a concept – “a gender-performative, highly fluid social … Continue reading Publisher blames bad choice of reviewer for publication of hoax paper on penis as “social construct” 

Surprise! Paper retracted after author tells journal it’s a “pile of dung”

This summer, Ottawa Citizen reporter Tom Spears was sitting by a lake on vacation when he opened a spam email from a publisher. Amused to see the sender was a journal focused on bioethics, he got an idea. I thought, what if I just throw something outrageous at them? The situation should sound familiar to readers who … Continue reading Surprise! Paper retracted after author tells journal it’s a “pile of dung”

Sting operation forces predatory publisher to pull paper

Sometimes, the best way to expose a problem with the publishing process is to put it to a test — perhaps by performing a Sokal-style hoax, or submitting a paper with obvious flaws. In 2014, that’s just what a researcher in Kosovo did. Suspicious that a journal wasn’t doing a thorough job of vetting submissions, she decided to … Continue reading Sting operation forces predatory publisher to pull paper

Philosophy journal spoofed, retracts hoax article

A philosophy journal that focuses on the teachings of philosopher Alain Badiou has apparently fallen victim to yet another Sokal hoax, and has retracted a fake article submitted by authors trying to expose the publication’s weaknesses. The paper, “Ontology, Neutrality and the Strive for (non-)Being-Queer,” attributed to Benedetta Tripodi of the Universitatea Alexandru Ioan Cuza in … Continue reading Philosophy journal spoofed, retracts hoax article

Death camp dog satire retracted when German journal wasn’t in on joke

Totalitarianism and Democracy has removed a paper claiming that German Shepherds belonging to guards at the Berlin Wall descended from dogs used at concentration camps, after learning that the paper was a work of satire, The Guardian reports. The paper, and its author, are the creation of the anonymous group “Christiane Schulte and friends.” This isn’t the first hoax we’ve … Continue reading Death camp dog satire retracted when German journal wasn’t in on joke