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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 
(the 
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 
application 
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.  

Mary
mkirkaldy@aol.com