Organometallics Responds to the Dorta Situation

August 8th, 2013

As was first reported—I believe—by “Dr. MJP” in the comments thread of ChemBark’s original report on the Dorta paper, the editor-in-chief of Organometallics is distributing a letter to parties who have contacted the journal regarding the troubling comment on page 12 of the Supporting Information. ChemBark has confirmed the contents of the letter, which is reproduced below:

Wednesday 07 August

Dear Friends of Organometallics,

Chemical Abstracts alerted us to the statement you mention, which was overlooked during the peer review process, on Monday 05 August. At that time, the manuscript was pulled from the print publication queue.

The author has explained to us that the statement pertains to a compound that was “downgraded” from something being isolated to a proposed intermediate. Hence, we have left the ASAP manuscript on the web for now. We are requiring that the author submit originals of the microanalysis data before putting the manuscript back in the print publication queue.

Many readers have commented that the statement reflects poorly on the moral or ethical character of the author, but the broad “retribution” that some would seek is not our purview. As Editors, our “powers” are limited to appropriate precautionary measures involving future submissions by such authors to Organometallics, the details of which would be confidential (ACS Ethical Guidelines, http://pubs.acs.org/page/policy/ethics/index.html). Our decision to keep the supporting information on the web, at least for the time being, is one of transparency and honesty toward the chemical community.

Other stakeholders can contemplate a fuller range of responses. Some unedited opinions from the community are available in the comments section of a blog posting: http://blog.chembark.com/2013/08/06/a-­disturbing-­note-­in-­a-­recent-­si-­file/#comments

If you have any criticisms of the actions described above, please do not hesitate to share them with me.

Thanks much for being a reader of Organometallics, and best wishes,
John Gladysz
Editor-­in-­Chief

I’ll have another post on this story tomorrow; I just wanted to post the above letter for the sake of keeping a complete record on the blog. The letter has also been posted on Chemistry Blog and In the Pipeline.


8 Responses to “Organometallics Responds to the Dorta Situation”

  1. guest Says:

    Gladysz, J.A., Ball, Z.T., Bertrand, G., Blum, S.A., Dong, V.M., Dorta, R., Hahn, F.E., Humphrey, M.G., Jones, W.D., Klosin, J., Manners, I., Marks, T.J., Mayer, J.M., Rieger, B., Ritter, J.C., Sattelberger, A.P., Schomaker, J.M., Yam, V.W.-W. 2012, ‘Organometallics roundtable 2011’, Organometallics, 31, pp. 1. Detail

    – does it matter that the editor-in-chief has a common paper (in Organometallics) with Reto Dorta?

  2. Paul Bracher Says:

    @guest: That was a report of a roundtable discussion, so I wouldn’t read anything into it. In fact, that “paper” is a very interesting read!

  3. Joey Walsh Says:

    It is about time the authors peaks about this/

  4. Rumba Says:

    ugh, this whole thing stinks. Sure we don’t now anything _for sure_ but this looks like a really stinky case of data fabrication and I feel utter disgust towards this kind of work ethics

  5. anon Says:

    For the record an editorial review of this case has been published.
    http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/om401186q

  6. Pixel Says:

    Has anyone seen the response from ACS in Chemical & Enginering News claiming that the paper has now been cleared of falsification charge?

    http://cen.acs.org/articles/92/i7/Controversial-Organometallics-Paper-Cleared-Falsification0.html

    I do not see how this in any way clears Dorta’s case. This is just as bland as correction and addition to the original supporting information. This case still stinks!

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