CALL FOR DISCUSSION: bionet.journals.note

David Kristofferson kristoff at net.bio.net
Mon Oct 19 16:43:44 EST 1992


We have received a proposal for a new newsgroup:

bionet.journals.note (e-mail address: JRNLNOTE).

Discussion will now be open through 29 October on
BIOFORUM/bionet.general (*not* on BIONEWS/bionet.announce).

Please do not post one-line messages saying only "I am in favor of
such a newsgroup".  We will collect votes later.  The discussion
period is an opportunity for anyone to bring up reservations about the
proposed charter and to propose modifications prior to the vote.  The
discussion leader may submit a revised proposal in light of the
discussion, and the new charter would be included in the call for votes
which will go out on October 30th.

Please be aware that only one vote is counted per e-mail address, so
it is necessary to have your own account in order to vote.  Multiple
votes from the same address are not accepted.  If you are interested
in the following newsgroup, but do not have an e-mail address of your
own, please obtain one from your computer center before the call for
votes is issued.

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Proposal to establish bionet.journals.note

Discussion leader:  Donald R. Forsdyke
                    Department of Biochemistry,
                    Queen's University
                    Kingston, Ontario
                    Canada, K7L3N6

                    Donald.R.Forsdyke at QueensU.CA


I would like to suggest a new Bionet group for the exchange of
information concerning journals. Having had a good idea, done the
experiments and written a paper, one is faced with the problem of
where to submit it. The wrong decision at this stage can cause a
variety of problems, not the least of which is delay. [Of course, not
too far down the line when electronic journals get going, this problem
will not be so pressing.]

Two examples have appeared on the "net" over the past few weeks. In
one case an author was upset that he had received no correspendence
from the editor of a journal for several months. Someone was able to
tell him that the editor had been in an automobile accident and that
may have delayed things. In another case an editorial office had
moved. Manuscripts sent in by courier were being forwarded by regular
mail, with concomitant delays.

Much of the "inside" information on journals is gathered informally,
over the years, so that "old hands" are less at a disadvantage then
"new". Hopefully, some of this experience could be passed along to new
authors. For example, the journal Nature states that "less than 50%"
of the papers received are actually sent out for review.  What does
that mean? 40%, 30%, 10%? If the answer is 10% then papers must be
written with the primary intent of getting over through the initial
editorial filter, rather than satisfying subsequent reviewers.

Apart from use by those who submit to journals, I envisage that the
new forum would act as a bulletin board for journal editors who might
want to post their latest "Instructions for Authors" or announce new
changes in Editorial Policy.

                         Sincerely,

                         Don Forsdyke

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