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Re: JVP, SVP...too many 'VP's...

In a message dated 5/26/00 7:09:02 PM Eastern Daylight Time, 
eamalitz@hotmail.com writes:  (quoting me)

>  >qualification for membership is sponsorship by an SVP member.
>  >Since there are ethics and other agreements involved, I would not sponsor 
>  >someone whom I did not know personally.
>  One can only marvel at the kinds of hang-ups people have with the mere act 
>  of subscription for a scholarly journal. With such an attitude it is 
>  unlikely that the real science of paleontology reaches the public. 
Anyone who wishes to pay $210 per year may subscribe to the Journal
of Vertebrate Paleontology.  I would encourage everyone who is interested
in the subject to subscribe.  

>  All they 
>  will have is the "interest" and the pseudo-scientific press to whet their 
>  tastes. It is time that paleotologists make their work more accessible to 
>  the public with all the science un-diluted rather make statements about 
>  others naivette. 
Again, anyone who is interested in the papers can subscribe to the journals
or visit a library where the papers are available.  Quoting Dr. Holtz on the
un-diluted, though: "it is, however, a technical journal: this is where we 
professional we) publish our stuff with no need to "dumb dow...", er..., 
popularize (ah, that's better!) the text."  Exactly.  There is no obligation
to the average-interested-party to make sure that Joe Average understands
all; it is up to Mr. Average to do his preparation and homework. Everything 
does not have to be homogenized, especially as we are here dealing with a 
publication that is primarily for professionals in the sciences.

>  For example of the large section of 10-12 year old kids 
>  getting excited about a new giant theropod there would be at least some 
>  willing to pour over the bones and pursue science with great vigor. They 
>  sure are as entitled to reading or writing a scientific a scientific paper 
>  on a carcharodontosaur as an 18 year old with high ethical concerns.
Of course the 0-17 year olds should be able to read it if they want to.  They
can either subscribe or peruse a copy at their library.  By the way, SVP is
sustained by membership fees, sales of publications, etc.--it is not a
charity--so a circulation of millions would probably be welcomed by
the Executive Committee.  

However, membership in the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology is a
different matter.  It is not a social club.  Look at the membership 
at:  http://www.museum.state.il.us/svp/svpinfo/app98-99.html
which includes the ethics statements and the minimum age requirement
of 18.  Larry Dunn may comment on contract law, but the prospective 
member must sign after the statement:  "Upon approval of my membership 
to the SVP, I agree to abide by the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology's 
Ethics Statement provided below." 

As I said in my original post, I would not sponsor anyone whom I had not 
met, as my signature on a form such as this would indicate a recommendation 
as to character.