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It would be far better to replace refereeing with TruthSift
By: Eric, on 31 Mar 2019


It would be far better to replace refereeing with TruthSift.

Depending on the desires of the Journal, the topic could be public, or private restricted to the author and the referees and editors.

The paper would be downloadable by referees using a link at the topic page, which would otherwise state "this paper should be published as is.". The referees (and if it was desired to allow it to be public, anyone else) would then add proofs and refutations to the topic statement. The author could rebut statements, possibly after making edits.

 


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Responses: 9
Views: 1083
Authors: 1
Graph Last Updated: 14 Nov 2019
Topic Statement Status Last Changed: Never.
Nature magazine editorial describes advantages of open refereeing but says some referees prefer to be anonymous
Reviewers currently have no motivation to do good job but could earn reputations on TruthSift.
Referees often take forever and then give no substantive response
Model shows Quality of papers is radically degraded if just a few reviewers are motivated by other interest
It would be far better to replace refereeing with TruthSift
The peer review process is being targeted by bad actors
The present refereeing system is not preventing vast numbers of fake results from being published
Using Truthsift the referees would be embarrassed if they took many months as often happens now
Using Truthsift the authors could respond Point by point, as could referees

The diagram could be private, or if public  referees could use a pseudonym. They could still be known to the editors of Nature, and they could still have reputations just a many anonymous authors have on Twitter. They would still have to defend their views.

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-018-06045-5

 


Reviewers currently have no motivation to  do good job but could earn reputations on TruthSift.

Here's a history of modern refereeing discussing this problem and some others.

https://physicstoday.scitation.org/doi/full/10.1063/PT.3.3463

 


Papers contrary to the conventional wisdom are often rejected without any substantive response, that is without any discussion of what's wrong or any citation too contradictory evidence. Referees who are biased against the author or his subject, or who are simply uninterested or too busy will often drag their heels for up to a year. I once had a hard math paper stalled for a year only to get no substantive response. When I complained to the editor (of Communications in Mathematical Physics) he published it within days and I still never saw a substantive review. Whole fields are kept as cargo cult science by never offering a substantive review to papers against the prevailing dogma.

Here is a  discussion of some of these problems in philosophy:

https://philosopherscocoon.typepad.com/blog/2016/03/on-journal-refereeing-why-trust-me-isnt-good-enough.html


Reviewers don't always have time to do good job. Some are incompetent. Others have an agenda, such as saving the world from climate change, or preventing anti-vaxxers from having more motivation not to vaccinate. However well motivated you may think these agendas are, they conflict with Scientific progress. Others may have agendas Iike not publishing papers that are conflicting with papers they are about to publish, or favoring certain institutions, or altruism, or racism.

The link below presents a computer model showing that even a small fraction of otherwise motivated reviewers leads to a substantial degradation in the quality of published papers.

https://physicsworld.com/a/peer-review-highly-sensitive-to-poor-refereeing-claim-researchers/


It would be far better to replace refereeing with TruthSift.

Depending on the desires of the Journal, the topic could be public, or private restricted to the author and the referees and editors.

The paper would be downloadable by referees using a link at the topic page, which would otherwise state "this paper should be published as is.". The referees (and if it was desired to allow it to be public, anyone else) would then add proofs and refutations to the topic statement. The author could rebut statements, possibly after making edits.

 


There is a lot of Money ego and career success tied up and a lot of motivation to cheat and a lot of ways to do it.

https://blogs.lse.ac.uk/impactofsocialsciences/2016/12/13/manipulating-the-peer-review-process-why-it-happens-and-how-it-might-be-prevented/

 


See the proofs of this statement:

https://truthsift.com/graph/On-Controversial-Topics,-Who-is-More-Often-Right,-the-Majority-or-a-Minority/466/0/-1/-1/0/6752/0/0/0/0/0/0/0/0/0/0/0/0/0/0

 


Using Truthsift the referees would be embarrassed if they took many months as often happens now.

 


Using Truthsift the authors could respond Point by point, as could referees.

 


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