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May
20

My experiences reviewing at PLOS

While I am a supporter and proponent of open accessing publishing, I have in the past been fairly critical of some of these journals, in particular PLOS. Even though I still publish in their journals I have held off from PLOS ONE in favor of F1000Research who I feel have a better publishing – reviewing model which I suits me just fine. Today something new happened as far as I can tell though. They (PLOS ONE) sent me and probably thousands of others, thank you’s for reviewing! I am flattered..but hold on..

Sean Ekins
PLOS ONE Reviewer (2014)

May 2015

Dear Sean,

On behalf of PLOS and the PLOS ONE editorial team, I would like to thank you for participating in the peer review process this past year at PLOS ONE. We very much appreciate your valuable input in 2014. We know there are many claims on your time and expertise but with your help, we have continued to publish an influential, lively and highly accessed Open Access journal. Simply put, we could not do it without you and the thousands of other volunteers for PLOS ONE and the other PLOS journals who graciously contributed time reviewing manuscripts.

A public “Thank You” to our 2014 reviewers – including you – was published in February 2015.

(2015) PLOS ONE 2014 Reviewer Thank You. PLoS ONE 10(2): e0121093. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0121093

Your name is listed in the Supporting Information file associated with the article. I hope that you will be able to use this letter, along with the article citation, to claim the credit and recognition you deserve within your institution for supporting PLOS ONE and Open Access publishing.

If you would ever like to provide feedback on our processes, we would very much welcome that. Please send your feedback to us at plosone@plos.org.

With Gratitude,

Damian
Damian Pattinson
Editorial Director
PLOS ONE

P.S. If you’d like to receive news and information from PLOS, opt-in here.

I appreciate the little email but at the same time it made me wonder if all of this is starting to get a little out of hand. Maybe its just me. I find that perhaps I am getting a bit more cynical but do we really need to get credit for reviewing papers? Is it not our role as scientists to review papers? Honestly as an editorial board member at other journals I get to see plenty of papers that get routed around to reviewers and while I do not review as many papers as I used to I feel I am doing my bit for scholarly publishing. I also know there are also some mechanisms for paying reviewers, and while I do not want to stifle these alternative business models, they are not yet the norm.  So quite honestly I do not feel the need to claim credit for reviewing someones paper. Yes, I like the idea of listing openly the names of reviewers of each paper (in the interests of transparency) and PLOS ONE are not there yet. I also like the idea of sharing reviewers reviews as I have been trying to do here and PLOS ONE do not do that either. But I for one will not be adding another line to my CV that states I reviewed for PLOS ONE. What next a citation for reading a paper in PLOS ONE? Where do we draw the line? My request to them is do the things that help with transparency and building confidence in reviewing rather than what appears trivial to me. I would prefer a discount on publishing with them if I review papers rather than some citation. That would be a very nice “Thank You”. I look forward to that kind of email in future, but it may be a long wait.

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