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Re: Ceratopsine phylogeny questions



2009/10/5 David Marjanovic <david.marjanovic@gmx.at>:
>>  Actually, the question of whether whether you want to consider them
>>  different genera in addition is entirely left to your (yes, your)
>>  taste is entirely left to your (yes, your) taste.  It's clear that
>>  David prefers to think of genera as _wholly_ arbitrary, but there are
>>  plenty of workers who disagree.  We should all remember that
>>  vertebrate palaeontology, and perhaps dinosaur palaeontology in
>>  particular, is very avant garde in this respect -- start talking
>>  about genera being purely arbitrary on, say, an extant entomology
>>  mailing list if you don't believe me.
>
> Well, what criteria (if any) do they use? How (if at all) do they define
> "genus"?
>
> After all, the ICZN gives us full "taxonomic freedom" in this respect.

You'd have to ask them that.  All I am saying is that those people are
out there, there are a lot of them, and (since they tend to be
old-timers) they are often in positions of authority and influence.

That doesn't (of course) mean that you have to agree with them; but it
does mean that you would be wise to be aware of their existence and
their opinions.  And perhaps not to present your own as though they
represent a position that is universally held.

As for me ... I feel a paper coming on on this subject.