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Science publisher fooled by gibberish papers

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Posted February 28, 2014

Publisher of science journals Springer said Thursday it would scrap 16 papers from its archives after they were revealed to be computer-generated gibberish.

The fake papers had been submitted to conferences on computer science and engineering whose proceedings were published in specialised, subscription-only publications, Springer said.

“We are in the process of taking down the papers as quickly as possible,” the German-based publisher said in a statement.

“This means that they will be removed, not retracted, since they are all nonsense.”

Springer added: “We are looking into our procedures to find the weakness that could allow something like this to happen, and we will adapt our processes to ensure that it does not happen again.”

The embarrassing lapse was exposed by French computer scientist Cyril Labbe of the Joseph Fourier University in Grenoble.

He also spotted more than 100 other “nonsense” papers unwittingly published by the New York-based Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE), the journalNature reported.

In a statement to AFP, the institute said it had been advised “there might have been some conference papers published in our IEEE Xplore digital library that did not meet our quality standards.”

Read more at: Phys.org

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