Citation Violations

Scientists are guilty of bibliographic negligence. Here's how to police the pages of journals.

By Richard Gallagher

The age-old problem of attribution in science—in other words, the practice of citation—has resurfaced with a vengeance in a couple of recent fracases.

What's new about these cases is that they're being played out online in full gory detail and in real time. For the first time, large sections of the community can get involved in judging the evidence for themselves, and in having their say. It's very illuminating.

Is there a "best practice" for citing prior work, and how should it be implemented? Have your say in 1 generated 37 comments from concerned readers.

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2 is helping no one, and they are running the risk of making themselves irrelevant through nonparticipation.

In the second case, researcher Neil Greenspan, 3 describes how the perceived novelty and importance of a...

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