Message 2005-12-0032: Re: An alternative to the Companion Volume?

Mon, 24 Oct 2005 20:26:05 +0200

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Date: Mon, 24 Oct 2005 20:26:05 +0200
From: [unknown]
Subject: Re: An alternative to the Companion Volume?

Dear colleagues,

=09In case anybody wonders, I suspect that=3D20
if David's proposal has not triggered more=3D20
discussion on this list, it is simply that many=3D20
of us are very busy right now (this is certainly=3D20
my case); it is not by lack of interest.=3D20
However, there are other reasons.  For instance,=3D20
the decision to launch the PhyloCode in the=3D20
companion volumes was made by the plenary session=3D20
of the ISPN, and it would logically take another=3D20
one to choose an alternative.  This would either=3D20
entail conducting extensive discussions and votes=3D20
by e-mail (not convenient for the whole=3D20
membership), or it would require waiting for the=3D20
next ISPN meeting to disccuss this (not advisable=3D20
in my opinion because we need to launch this code=3D20



>I apologize for the somewhat unusual length; I think this matter is =
>important. Please bear with me.
>The idea of having a Companion Volume is to avoid having a gold rush=
, a
>competitive race where people run to get their favorite names and
>definitions registered first. I wholeheartedly agree with this inten=
>But the Companion Volume may not be an effective way to implement it=
. It
>has two potential big problems:
>- If too few people contribute as authors and editors, the risk rise=
s that
>unwise* or unpopular names or definitions could be set in stone, lea=
>the LARGE number of systematists who has never heard of phylogenetic
>nomenclature to despise it, perhaps even driving away some current
>adherents. If EITHER number becomes too large, the PhyloCode will go=
>way of the BioCode.
>- If too many people are involved, it will never reach publication.
>* =3D3D will produce confusion when the topology changes in unforese=
en but
>foreseeable ways.
>The balance between these dangers is probably _very_ difficult to fi=
>and if we run out of luck, that balance might itself lie in an undes=
>place (like containing many largely wise but rather unpopular names =
>definitions _and_ being published 10 years from now).
>Therefore I would like to suggest an, in my humble opinion, safer
>alternative: Instead of having one volume published at once, we coul=
>spread the work over time -- by implementing the PhyloCode piecemeal=
>Here's how I imagine that:
>1. On the website, and maybe in the first issue of the Society's jou=
>we post a notice that people are encouraged to publish papers (prefe=
>collaboratively) on the nomenclature of their favorite clades. Such =
>already exist; an example (from dinosaurs, where currently the most
>discussion on PN happens) is cited below.
>_____Maybe the publication of such papers should be restricted to th=
>Society's journal. This way we would make sure that we wouldn't miss=
>of them, and that all would abide to the PhyloCode. The disadvantage=
>be that it would (probably) slow down the whole process.
>2. The names in such a publication become _provisionally registered_=
>3. A certain amount of time later (what about some five to ten years=
?) the
>Committee on Phylogenetic Nomenclature (or whatever part or appointe=
>thereof) looks what has become of the names in that paper: Are they =
>used? Are they being ignored? Are they still being discussed?
>_____If they are in general use, the CPN changes their registration =
>provisional to durable (except if the authors do not want this); see=
>fourth point.
>_____If they are being ignored, the CPN deletes them from the regist=
>_____If the discussion is still going on, it won't be interrupted --=
>CPN extends the time of provisional registration by another term.
>_____Depending on the CPN's workload, the duration of a term should =
>considered a minimum (if the CPN has too much to do, it can simply
>consider the issue later).
>4. Upon durable registration, the authors of the names stay the same=
, and
>priority sets in. I'm not sure if the year and the registration numb=
>should change to reflect the date of durable registration, or whethe=
r they
>should stay, too, which might make the Code retroactive. This issue =
>5. After the nomenclature of a part of the tree has been set in ston=
e in
>this way, anyone can name newly discovered clades in that part and c=
>immediately register them durably, but should maybe not need to do s=
>In other words, each part of the tree gets its own Companion Volume =
>its own date for the implementation of the PhyloCode.
>_____There is, by the way, a precedent for this: under the ICZN, pri=
>starts in 1758, except for the spiders which start in 1751. (This
>particular publication is simply declared by the ICZN to have been
>published in 1758. We don't need to do such nonsense, we have the
>registration numbers.)
>I hope to have started a vigorous discussion (and to have elevated t=
>impact factor of PaleoBios by an order of magnitude ;-) )!
>Michael P. Taylor & Darren Naish: The phylogenetic taxonomy [sic] of
>Diplodocoidea (Dinosauria: Sauropoda), PaleoBios 25(2), 1 -- 7 (2005=
>downloadable from
>Telefonieren Sie schon oder sparen Sie noch?
>NEU: GMX Phone_Flat

Michel Laurin
=3D46RE 2696, CNRS
Universit=3DE9 Paris 7 - Denis Diderot
2, place Jussieu
case 7077
75005 Paris

tel. (33 1) 44 27 36 92

Secretary of the International Society for Phylogenetic Nomenclature


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