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[Annelida] Alitta (=Neanthes) - No, no no !

Geoff Read via annelida%40net.bio.net (by Geoffrey.Read from niwa.co.nz)
Sat Nov 12 20:46:11 EST 2011

Dear Maria Cristina, Dear All,

 I commented on an unnamed paper which had conspicuous use of a name arrangement that was quite bizarre to me, but probably looked/looks okay to someone who doesn't know any nereidid taxonomy. Probably I shouldn't worry about it too much. At least it had no spelling errors in it - not always the case.

I did not intend to make an example of the authors, or the referees, and especially not the editors (this was definitely not Maria Cristina's mistake). If that was a naive expectation, let me make clear now I do not regard any one of them as other than worthy citizens and valuable contributors in our little corner of science, and sincerely did not want to upset them with my email. 

Best wishes,

Geoff Read

From: annelida-bounces from oat.bio.indiana.edu [annelida-bounces from oat.bio.indiana.edu] on behalf of gambimc from szn.it [gambimc from szn.it]
Sent: 12 November 2011 08:19
To: annelida from magpie.bio.indiana.edu
Subject: Re: [Annelida] Alitta (=Neanthes) - No, no no !

Dears all,

Stat rosa pristina nomine, nomina nuda tenemus...

the "incriminated" Alitta (=Neanthes) was a mistake (mine) in proofs
corrections, in fact it was emended in the title and most of the text,
while it remained in the running title and abstract...

I am currently providing, if possible, to correct the online version
of the paper, to be hopefully admitted again in the polychaete (and
taxonomist) community...

Maria Cristina Gambi

Citando Geoff Read <Geoffrey.Read from niwa.co.nz>:

> Hi there,
> A recent paper in an important publication had the formulation "
> Alitta (=Neanthes) succinea" in the first lines of the abstract and
> introduction, and even in the running title!
> No, no no!  That is just silly. It offends my eye, and it will
> confuse the biologist public, and I dare say, informatics data
> algorithms will get it wrong when parsing the name.
> What was really meant was " Alitta succinea [formerly Neanthes
> succinea] "  Of course it was also formerly several other
> combinations, starting with Nereis. But we progress.
> Too late now, but since how to handle this situation is still not
> clear to a few I raise the matter here again.  It's quite
> with first letter in upper case that is interpolated in parenthesis
>  between genus and species is solely for the intermediate category,
> subgenus.  But Neanthes will never be a subgenus of Alitta. Likewise
>  Neanthes and Alitta are not equivalent so why the equals sign? The
> formulation Alitta (=Neanthes) succinea is thus nonsensical.
> How to formulate correctly is covered by Recommendation 6A of the
> current ICZN code.
> http://www.nhm.ac.uk/hosted-sites/iczn/code/index.jsp?article=6&nfv=#1
> " Recommendation 6A. Undesirable interpolation of certain
> genus-group names in binomina or trinomina. No genus-group name
> other than a valid subgeneric name should be interpolated between a
> generic name and a specific name, even in square brackets or
> parentheses. An author who desires to refer to a former generic
> combination should do so in some explicit form such as
> "Branchiostoma lanceolatum [formerly in Amphioxus]".

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