Ken Gillman: Medical science publishing: A slow-motion train wreck

Ken Gillman’s reply to Samuel Gershon’s comment


          Samuel Gershon says: “You cannot have a journal without meaningful ongoing investment and supervision.”

          I shall resort to another Latin tag: Tempora mutantur et nos mutamur in illis and add, but the investment corrupts the contents, in the service of stock-holders; and the notion that there are competent editors for the tens of thousands of journals “out there” stretches my credulity well beyond the breaking point.

          We seem to live in a world of euphemisms and aphorisms. I do not understand: “no pay — no play” (“joke” or what? and insofar as it has meaning, I am not sure what insight it adds).

          I cannot resist a parody of the Epicurus paradox from “Dialogues concerning Natural Religion,” the modern wording of which is attributable to David Hume (1779).

          As a reminder, it starts: “Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?”


          Are journals willing to publish good studies, but not able?

          Then, they are not useful.

          Are they able, but not willing?

          Then, they are corrupted.


          Are they both able and willing?

          Then whence cometh the multitude of poor studies?


          Are they neither able nor willing?

          Then, why have journals at all?


October 3, 2019