Considering that papers are in review for such a long time, I wonder if an editor of some glossy journal has ever sent this email:
"Dear Author, we regret to inform you that we cannot send your fifth revised version to one of the original reviewers. Actually, reviewer #3 is now dead. Instead we have recruited a juvenile who is guaranteed to give us many more years of faithful service (free as always, of course). Though a tad reckless, and a little bit of an imbecile, he happens to be an international authority on the detailed analysis of the mouse scrotum - the focus of your current research.
. Sincerely, xxxx".
Not citing the nice paper that does not match your hypothesis?.....good luck with that...(applies to most mortals)
If there is a good study out there that does not match your favorite hypothesis, not citing it may not be the best course of action. Besides recruiting ill-will, the bigger risk is that as time goes by, your own study might be ignored by them and other players in the field as well. And if there was a kernel of truth in their study, then your findings might be permanently sidelined by history, with you being earmarked as someone who just did not see the big picture. Applies to most mortals with one exception.
If you are a Nobel-prize winner...then just go right ahead and do whatever the heck you want. You've already won.
So here's a simple rule for judging whether or not to send your paper to the hallowed "high impact journal". Ask if you have really shown not only WHAT happens, but HOW it happens. The latter is often hard and takes many years. Be honest now!
Yes there are a few articles that escape this rule - often pointed out by colleagues - but they are likely exceptions. The reasons for this are numerous (sexy or newsworthy story, "clout" of the PI and even frank favoritism by editors), but dwelling on this is unproductive. Spend time trying to answer the "HOW" instead...
Some old ones Reposted...
8/18/13 - A Classification of PI's - find yours' in the list!
7/6/12 - Way to a "Science paper"
5/30/11 - 20/20 Hindsights
9/30/11 - Evolution of a bizzare, new Idea
11/17/2011 - Rationale for curiosty-driven research...
lessons from a 4 year old
1/28/12 - "GTFM" - hilarious article on grant writing!
The PI Blog
This blog exists because my wife seemed a bit tired of being the only recipient of my random pontifications on life and Science for many years; and gently encouraged me to vent in a blog instead. From time to time, I put down thoughts that occur to me as I naiively stumble through a life in Science - bestowed upon me by accident (literally!). Please keep in mind that these musings are rather obvious things of little or no use to anyone, and are certainly not personally targeted in any way, even though they are obviously derived from my experiences. OK, enough said.