Retraction Watch

Tracking retractions as a window into the scientific process

Archive for the ‘plagiarism’ Category

Tracking down lit crit plagiarism leads to “discourses of madness”

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Screen Shot 2014-11-19 at 12.37.17 PMThis one brings together a bunch of our favorite topics, including plagiarism, poetry, and predatory publishers. Look, alliteration!

Richard Lawrence Etienne Barnett, who often publishes under the name R-L Etienne Barnett, has been accused of plagiarizing at least 18 articles by other scholars, mostly analyses of French poetry, as well as duplicating his own work at least eight times.

Most recently, French literary theorist Michel Charles published a dissection of Barnett’s history of plagiarism on lit crit site Fabula. Barnett had sent an article to Poétique, the poetry journal Charles edits. Charles quickly realized something was amiss (all quotes in this post were originally in French, and have been translated via Google): Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

November 20th, 2014 at 9:30 am

Physics paper sinks amid accusations of unacceptable “overlap”

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prl-bannerA paper in Physical Review Letters has been retracted for “overlap” with two other previously published papers.

The notice isn’t available online yet, so we got in touch with American Physical Society (APS) editorial director Dan Kulp for more information. Here’s what he told us about “Anomalous melting scenario of the two-dimensional core-softened system”: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

November 19th, 2014 at 9:30 am

Leukemia paper retracted for plagiarism — 18 years later

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BTER_116_1_cvr_spine.p65Nearly two decades after a Polish researcher plagiarized the work of a Turkish team, her theft has been exposed and the paper retracted.

According to an article in Polish-language paper Gazeta Wyborcza, Jolanta Rzymowska of the Medical University of Lublin was the subject of two disciplinary hearings, the first in February 2014, following the discovery of her plagiarism by well-known Polish fraud hunter Marek Wronski. It was determined that her 1996 paper contained word-for-word text from a paper by a team at the University of Ankara.

Ultimately, Rzymowska was given an official reprimand, rather than any harsher disciplinary action, because she copied descriptions rather than results. From a Google translation of the article: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

November 18th, 2014 at 9:30 am

“Significant” copying forces retraction of sternotomy paper

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icatsInteractive Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery has yanked a 2005 sternotomy paper by a group of researchers who plagiarized from an earlier article on the subject.

The article, “The complications of repeat median sternotomy in paediatrics: six-months follow-up of consecutive cases,” came from a team at Glenfield Hospital in Leicester, England, and has been cited eight times, according to Scopus.

Here’s the notice:

Read the rest of this entry »

“Embarrassing and regrettable incident of faulty memory” leads to retraction

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aaaIs there any accounting for plagiarism?

A set of educational materials for accounting classes has been retracted for plagiarizing work published a decade earlier.

We spoke to the author of the retracted work, who explained that over the course of ten years of revising his classroom material, he lost track of what was original, and what was written by him or his fellow University of Saskatchewan professors.

Here’s the notice for “Ramm Wholesale: Reviewing Audit Work”: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

November 6th, 2014 at 9:30 am

What was behind an oddly-worded dental retraction? The authors stole someone’s thesis

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Image via Tambako

Image via Tambako

A dentistry journal has retracted a paper after discovering the research was lifted from dissertation work by two people unrelated to the paper authors.

Here’s the notice for “Treatment of mandibular angle fracture with a 2 mm, 3-dimensional rectangular grid compression miniplates: A prospective clinical study“: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

October 30th, 2014 at 2:25 pm

“Our real intention was to emphasize, not plagiarize”

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joms.13692132This one’s not a retraction, but rather a back and forth of letters to the editor concerning accusations of plagiarism.

Dentists Bryan and Paul Jacobs, a father and son team, wrote a paper describing a novel surgical technique in March 2013. In October 2013, several Croatian dentists published their own paper using the technique.

A year later, the story has gotten a little more interesting. The November issue of the Journal of Oral and Mixillofacial Surgery, which published the second article, has two letters. One, from the Jacobses, accuses the Croatian authors of plagiarism. The second is a response from author Dragana Gabrić Pandurić, claiming “our real intention was to emphasize, not plagiarize, their work.”

Here’s the letter from Bryan and Paul Jacobs (paywalled): Read the rest of this entry »

Ripping off someone else’s thesis sinks paper on chicken temperatures

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ISB_IJBProof that people will plagiarize anything they think they can get away with: a Brazilian scientist plagiarized a masters’ student’s thesis on the surface temperature of chickens.

We spoke with International Journal of Biometeorology editor-in-chief Scott Sheridan about the case: Read the rest of this entry »

Blatant plagiarism sinks paper (and earns a sabbatical!) for mathematician

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Image via Akash Kataruka

Image via Akash Kataruka

You know it’s a good one when it makes it onto the Wikipedia page for “scientific misconduct.”

On April 21, the International Journal of Pure and Applied Mathematics retracted two 2008 papers by scientist Alexander Spivak of Holon Institute of Technology in Israel. In September, the journal updated the notice to explain why: The papers both contained copy/pasted chunks from a 2001 paper by Spivak’s post-doc boss at Tel Aviv University, Zeev Schuss, and two other authors.

The tipster seems to have been Schuss himself, who told us about his role in the unravelling of the fraud: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Cat Ferguson

October 7th, 2014 at 9:30 am

Arizona prof plagiarizes student’s thesis, gets reprimanded, but keeps her job

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Susannah Dickinson, University of Arizona

Susannah Dickinson, via University of Arizona

An architecture professor at the University of Arizona has been sanctioned — lightly — for plagiarizing from the thesis of one of her masters’ students.

According to a report in the Arizona Daily Star, the professor, Susannah Dickinson: Read the rest of this entry »

Written by amarcus41

October 1st, 2014 at 9:30 am