Editor Discusses F—ing in Nature

February 8th, 2015

nchemfc_kit_250Stu Cantrill, editor of Nature Chemistry, has performed a profoundly beneficial service for our field: he has tracked the use of the word “fuck” (and its variations) throughout the 146-year history of the esteemed journal Nature.

Stu’s interest in the subject was piqued after seeing bollocks in a recent edition of the journal. He traced the first pair of ‘bollocks’ back to 1998.

Stu was able to find two innocent ‘Fuck’s in 1937 and 1985—they were proper nouns—before the first virulent ‘fuck’ appeared in 1989. This stuff is fascinating; check it out.

Stu takes a look at many other dirty words, and his analysis includes the expected reference to the infamous copper nanotube (CuNT) paper in ChemComm. Albeit unintentional, there is no better example of how ridiculous the acronym scene has become in science. I had several conversations in grad school excoriating some of the more creative acronyms devised by labmates.

And finally, this is an excellent opportunity to boast that I hold the honor of being the first person to write the F-word in Nature Chemistry, if you don’t count the hundreds of times fourth-year graduate students have scrawled it in the margin of papers after getting scooped.

That’s an accomplishment sure to impress the tenure committee.


15 Responses to “Editor Discusses F—ing in Nature”

  1. Lila Guterman Says:

    Thanks for calling attention to this truly important piece of publication analysis!

  2. David Gottfried Says:

    This reminds me of being a little kid and looking up all the swear words in the dictionary.

  3. Stu Says:

    What’s this bollocks doing on ChemBark?

  4. Paul Bracher Says:

    Sometimes I wish I had developed my mother’s British accent. When Americans say ‘bollocks’, it comes out flat and insincere. When Brits exclaim ‘bollocks’, the sound is rich and resonant.

  5. Hap Says:

    I think Prof. Whitesides had in on some of the acronym craziness – I think some of his early work was in NMR, in the vicinity of the SECSY/NoESY/INADEQUATE pulse sequences.

  6. excimer Says:

    I used to say fuck all the time in my blog, and people just said I should cut it out.

    As Eminem once put it, fuck them, and fuck you too.

  7. eugene Says:

    Nothing about the terrible limited double-blind peer review idea from ‘Artifice’ and downstream journals?

    drugmonkey.scientopia.org/2015/02/25/nature-is-not-at-all-serious-about-double-blind-peer-review/

    It sounds good, but is likely to screw us all small guys over instead. “The people who are not powerful and are, as it happens, just exactly those people who are calling for blinded review so their work will have a fair chance on its own merits will opt-in but will gain no relative advantage by doing so.”

    No relative advantage indeed… more likely they’ll be fucked because the reviewer assumes that if they picked the blinded option, they are probably a nobody. This sucks… And I was considering writing another paper for Notyour Chemistry as well. Maybe I should just skip it and send it to Jackass as protest, despite having a powerful boss as corresponding author. The boss would have probably pick the single-blind option if available, but will now say “I thought you wanted to send the paper to Nature Chemistry?” “Nope, changed my mind. Besides, what are the chances it’ll get accepted there anyways? And we’ll have to wait five months too… Plus I don’t have much time left, better send it to JACS, it’ll end up in some lower tier journal at worst in a few months (I never say Jackass in front of the big boss)”.

  8. wolfie Says:

    What about the SLU- word ? Carmen Drahl would not be impressed.

    Replication is the whole goal of human life, ’cause the creator is watching us and stays laughing – forever.

  9. wolfie Says:

    I should start worrying now, because thier is sol ittkle erspnose

    Entropy, all bute ne

    2nd law of thermodynamics

  10. wolfie Says:

    I personally know it is not easy to teach chemistry to people with little interest.

    Paul, there is no truth. It’s all about interest.

    Financially, or not.

    So ein Blödsinn.

  11. wolfie Says:

    The Greek always have done it like this .

    And so – they continue to do so.

  12. wolfie Says:

    You have a tenure committee ??

    I advise you to turn to http://www.mse.gatech.edu/faculty/milam

  13. Solo Says:

    Interesting choice of word.

  14. lara Says:

    Very nice educational post,you have posted very valuable information about chemistry .Keep sharing the content.chemistry assignment help

  15. finances Says:

    No relative advantage indeed… more likely they’ll be fucked because the reviewer assumes that if they picked the blinded option, they are probably a nobody. This sucks… And I was considering writing another paper for Notyour Chemistry as well. Maybe I should just skip it and send it to Jackass as protest, despite having a powerful boss as corresponding author.


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