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看看审稿人员和期刊编辑人员如何处理一稿多稿

已有 4489 次阅读 2014-3-24 10:47 |个人分类:编辑杂谈|系统分类:论文交流|关键词:duplicate,submission| submission, Duplicate

How to handle a manuscript submitted simultaneously to two or more journals?

A reviewer asked a question in the Researchgate:

As a reviewer of a journal, what can/should you do when the author(s) submitted their manuscript simultaneously to two or more journals?

 Yesterday, I comprehensively reviewed a manuscript for a journal. The review took more than 10 hours of my time and I tried to do my best with more than 43 comments. Unfortunately, today I checked the authors' names and noticed that the manuscript has been recently published (with many faults) in another journal. I am EXTREMELY UPSET that these authors submitted their manuscript simultaneously to (at least) two journals. What did/would you do if you were in my shoes?

 Those answered the questions include reviewers and editors (like me). Here, I just selected several representative answers to this questions.

 QIU Dunlian, Chinese Academy of Sciences

 

In our journal (Journal of Mountain Science), we'll check the newly submitted papers for duplication and for plagiarism (including plagiarizing the authors' own papers) . So if one paper has been published,the crosschecking system will report that and then we'll reject the paper. However, if the authors submit their papers to several different journals at the same time, then the crosschecking system can't find it. We have once met one similar case.

One reviewer reported to us that he found the authors sent the same paper to two different journals (including the Journal of Mountain Science) when both of the two journals invited him to review. After receiving this letter, I immediately wrote to the authors and asked them to make an explanation about this and decide which journal they would withdraw from.

In fact when meeting such a situation, if the paper is in high quality, maybe the journal editor will ask the authors to withdraw from another journal, but if the journal is just so so, the editor will immediately reject the paper.

Michael Tordoff ·  Monell Chemical Senses Center

 What did/would you do if you were in my shoes?

 I agree that the editors of both journals should know of the authors perfidy.

 However, I would like to address something else you wrote. I was struck by your comment that you spent 10 hours and provided more than 43 comments in your review. I don't think this is useful for anyone. If the paper has so many substantial problems it requires 43 comments then it is beyond redemption, and the appropriate review would have been to reject the paper listing the main 2 - 5 problems with a final comment like "in addition to this there are many minor errors that need attention". If the bulk of these 43 errors were trivial, such as language usage problems, then a simple "this paper could benefit from editing by a native English speaker" would save you from pointing each one out. Remember, you were asked to review because the editor needs your scientific expertise. It is not your job to rewrite the paper, just to assess its strengths and weaknesses. So, to answer your "what would you do" question, next time I suggest you focus your review on the serious problems, thus saving your time and effort.

 Linda Mcphee ·  Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam

  I would tell the journal immediately and also realise that it's not the journal's fault. I am sorry to hear that your time and helpfulness and professional expertise have been wasted by this person. Assuming that, like our referees, you did this on a voluntary basis, I'm not sure there's much you *can* do.

 You could tell the journal in which it did appear, I suppose. If authors are likely to act this way, I'd want to know -- because our board would have possibly wanted to refuse new submissions from them -- we valued our referees very highly, and hated wasting people's time (though more often this was a result of authors not following through with revisions, rather than the outright cheating you describe).

 I don't know of any database for academic scammers :-(

 Of course, *if* the journal did offer a fee to you, you have clearly earned it. I mean, it's not your fault the paper shouldn't have been sent to you in the first place.

  Hassan Amini ·  Kurdistan University of Medical Sciences

 Dear Mustapha,

You may ask your new question separately from this discussion. However, I will provide a quick response. What I write here is from the link that Mohammed proposed. The ELSEVIER's view:

 Q: "How should an editor or Elsevier handle duplicate publication in other languages? Should both journals publish a notice about dual publication?"

 A: "If both journals are aimed at the same community of researchers and users, it should be considered duplicate publication and treated as such. However there are instances where an article might be published in local language in a local publication, which might then be considered for re-publication in an international journal. This of course can only happen with agreement between the two journals, and with a notice re the prior local publication, and if the editor-in-chief believes the article is significant and will reach a new or different community of readers."

  Anna Phillips · University of Birmingham

Report it to the Editor or your handling/associate editor immediately. As one of these, I would want to know and would then take it out of the Reviewer's hands and deal with it.

 Linda Mcphee ·  Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam

  Interesting thread. I am completely amazed that people think they can make multiple submissions and "pick one". This suggests people are not reading the "information for authors" of the journals, which an author *always* should read and follow. It's pure wishful thinking, and it could very well limit your future options as an academic author if a journal finds you doing this (which they would, because you'd have to formally withdraw the paper -- and those situations are rare enough to stand out).

Further, it makes very good sense to look at your material and your target journal and tell the story in the way that will be most meaningful for that journal... you are much more likely to get a good hearing that way then you will be wasting everyone's time. The last research I saw on this showed that 60% of papers turned down were turned done because they were "unsuitable" for the journal. From years of personal experience with journals I know that authors think this means the topic, but it doesn't. It means the way the topic was treated.

 The errors that now appear in so many more papers than in the past are, I believe, a direct result of publishers' decisions to outsource proofreading, and then to reward it with hobby-level wages. This has produced such poor results that many journals now just rely on the authors to proofread, and authors are not trained to proofread (it really is a specialised skill) and worse, they are more likely to miss mistakes because reading their own stuff, so they know what it "should" say (but that's really another thread).

Subrata Chakraborty · Dibrugarh University

 Sad to hear all this. In fact in such situations the paper and authors should be banned for a specific period from further publishing in any journal. There should be web site to display such cases for every one to check.

 Linas Balciauskas · Nature Research Centre

 as the Editor, I would like to know about such case ASAP. My advice: you stop review, and inform Editor/Managing editor/whoever is your contact in the journal about the duplicate. If review is paid - take your money.

As the Editor, I would write a letter to another journal, and suggest both papers are out, and the author banned. It is unethical, because all journals have text "not published, not being considered, not submitted... bla bla bla".

There is no excuse for such behaviour.

 Robert Brennan · Harvard University

 Hi Everyone, it sounds like there are some exceptions to the "not under review anywhere" policies I am familiar with, but increasingly, we are required to state in the cover letter or in a statement on the manuscript that the work is not previously published, not under consideration, etc. However, there is something to be said for the fact that editors rarely accept manuscripts without revisions, usually major ones. Given the few comments that suggest some authors submit to multiple journals and then chose the best or the fastest, the revisions thing gives authors wiggle room. They can merely choose not to resubmit their manuscript to the journal or journals that are low ranking. In one journal I review for I have had close to 20 manuscripts sent back for major revisions that have not come back resubmitted. On the other hand, I have only had one article of my own completely accepted without so much as a suggestion, but several others, I can't recall, accepted with some suggestions, so in any of those cases, it would be very awkward to withdraw a manuscript and publish somewhere else, not that it ever crossed my mind to submit to multiple journals!

 Muhammad Ayub · Ayub Medical College

 

It is unethical to submit an article to more than one journal simultaneously. It must be clearly declared in the 'Undertaking/Copyright Forwarding' that the article has not been/will not be submitted to any other journal before the first journal decides fate of the article whether accepted or rejected. If an article is found submitted to more than one journal, I shall opine that article to be rejected by BOTH journals as a punishment to the author(s), irrespective of the quality of the work! I am sure the authors of really high quality articles never have to submit their work to multiple journals.

 Fathi M Sherif · University of Tripoli

I am sorry to see such comments, you have to write to authors and editorial board, however, it is not ethically in submitting a manuscript to more than one journal at the same time, the authors usually stated that the manuscript was not published even as a part or considered for publication or even not submitted to another journal. This happens only in certain places of the world and with certain type of people. Now a days, usually most of manuscripts do not take too much of time for evaluation (2 and max 4 weeks), not ethic to submit the paper to more than one journal.

 

Jens Allmer ·  Izmir Institute of Technology
Dear Hassan,
as a reviewer myself, I try to do a good job and provide good feedback to the authors which takes some time.
Unfortunately, the reviews that I usually receive for my submissions are of very low quality probably produced via a skimming over the manuscript and then rejecting the paper on no grounds at all (there have been also very thorough and good reviews, but the majority is not). Generally, something that is hard to contest like: "not a large improvement in the field" or along those lines are reasons for rejection. Often details that were clearly stated and discussed in the manuscript are falsely understood (deliberately?) to reject submissions.

Now, why would someone not do a thorough review?
Surely, a time issue.
Why would they reject the paper they poorly reviewed?
Because in that case, they don't take any liability if the paper later turns out to be bad.
Basically, my time is wasted by such reviewers.

Therefore, measures have to be taken to improve the situation for example:
1) pay reviewers a decent fee and expect a high quality review.
In this case it would not make sense to submit to multiple journals because you would get useful feedback and can improve your work before a subsequent submission.
2) do open review, i. e.: everyone knows who is reviewing your work.
That would protect the manuscript submitter from hidden forms of plagiarism or other wrongdoing (who is to stop a reviewer from making a very slow review because they have a very similar manuscript about ready to submit). This would significantly improve the quality of the reviews since you have to be extra polite and anything you write must be to the best of your knowledge and can be contested.

In the current setup reviewers time is wasted, but if journal policies do not specifically prohibit multiple submissions (some that I know don't), it is understandable if authors try to prevent the problems pointed out above by multiple concurrent submissions.

There is always two sides to anything and I hope that you are able to appreciate the other side a little more now.
While reviewers time is wasted by authors, reviewers themselves waste the authors time (see above).
The question is which one is worse? I believe the former as it slows down the publication of good ideas. Cancel Save
Dear Hassan,
as a reviewer myself, I try to do a good job and provide good feedback to the authors which takes some time.
Unfortunately, the reviews that I usually receive for my submissions are of very low quality probably produced via a skimming over the manuscript and then rejecting the paper on no grounds at all (there have been also very thorough and good reviews, but the majority is not). Generally, something that is hard to contest like: "not a large improvement in the field" or along those lines are reasons for rejection. Often details that were clearly stated and discussed in the manuscript are falsely understood (deliberately?) to reject submissions.

Now, why would someone not do a thorough review?
Surely, a time issue.
Why would they reject the paper they poorly reviewed?
Because in that case, they don't take any liability if the paper later turns out to be bad.
Basically, my time is wasted by such reviewers.

Therefore, measures have to be taken to improve the situation for example:
1) pay reviewers a decent fee and expect a high quality review.
In this case it would not make sense to submit to multiple journals because you would get useful feedback and can improve your work before a subsequent submission.
2) do open review, i. e.: everyone knows who is reviewing your work.
That would protect the manuscript submitter from hidden forms of plagiarism or other wrongdoing (who is to stop a reviewer from making a very slow review because they have a very similar manuscript about ready to submit). This would significantly improve the quality of the reviews since you have to be extra polite and anything you write must be to the best of your knowledge and can be contested.

In the current setup reviewers time is wasted, but if journal policies do not specifically prohibit multiple submissions (some that I know don't), it is understandable if authors try to prevent the problems pointed out above by multiple concurrent submissions.

There is always two sides to anything and I hope that you are able to appreciate the other side a little more now.
While reviewers time is wasted by authors, reviewers themselves waste the authors time (see above).
The question is which one is worse? I believe the former as it slows down the publication of good ideas.

 

Attila Marton,  Babeş-Bolyai University


I didn't have time to read the answers, so I hope I won't repeat what someone else wrote. You should notify the editor of the journal, he should contact the editor of the other journal, and ban the Department of the author in question for 4 years from publishing. At least this is what Wiley does.

Chukwuemeka Iyoke, University of Nigeria

 

It is unethical practice to send the same article to more than one journal for review, and if an article that has been published is sent to another journal for a review, it amounts to self plagiarism. As a reviewer, you should have highlighted the major faults in the paper. It saves time spent on peer review. I thin k you should alert the editor of the journal you review for, and have the paper rejected

 



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