4 Oct 2010

Joining PLoS ONE

I'm excited to say I've just started as an Associate Editor with PLoS ONE at the Public Library of Science, after freelancing with them since the beginning of the year.

It's interesting timing in the wake of a surge in submissions post-Impact Factor and the recent brickbats hurled at the journal by PZ Myers and David Gorski, but I'm looking forward to helping the journal go from strength to strength.


Šoša said...

And question. How did you make it? I mean. I've been lapping around for a year, and didn't manage even to become freelancer. I'm pretty into that „medical editing“stuff. I even contributed to more than few journals. To some as author, to others (more often) as a reviewer. So... You can’t tell I’m an outsider. Yet again, PLoS looks like unreachable and abysmal dream.
I just finished a review for BMJ on forensic identification paper. It is 4 pages long. OMG!

Graham Seel said...

Interesting move, Matt. Congratulations on the new post :-)

Matt Hodgkinson said...

Thanks Graham!

Ivan, before I started freelancing for PLoS ONE I was an editor with BioMed Central for around six years, so my experience and contacts helped gain the freelancing post, and then the permanent post came up.

Getting a first foot in the door at a journal is the important thing, rather than aiming for a certain post, e.g. with PLoS. PLoS has quite a small professional editorial team, and there are lots of other journals and publishers out there, including an increasing number of open access options. I was lucky to be offered a post with BioMed Central back in the relatively early days of open access, I was even in the position to turn down a post with a society journal.

Šoša said...

Dear Matt, I'm aware of all that. Well – almost. To tell you the truth – PloS is something like a fantasy. Kind of unreachable publisher. Currently, I'm not in the position to even publish with PLoS… BioMed Central would be as climbing Mt Everest.Just how to get there? Finally, I'm young. Just doing first steps in the adult publishing world. ;)

pj said...

Congrats. Maybe you can stop stuff like this being published in quite such egregious form.

Šoša said...

Ehhhhhhhhhh, I'm speechless, it is pretty much like those HIVskepticism articles. The problem is, if something so questionable gets published by a journal with as high IF as, let's say, PLoS, mostly, people believe those things

Matt Hodgkinson said...

I agree that the Kirsch meta-analysis had flaws, but one article does not define a journal or a publisher! Peer review is not perfect - it usually weeds out the worst and most biased studies, and generally improves articles, but peer reviewers and editors are only human, and interpretations of data and statistical analyses can differ widely. As with all articles published by PLoS there is a comments section, which was well used in this case: http://www.plosmedicine.org/article/comments/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pmed.0050045;jsessionid=755538F329E675632C9DAA9062298A28.ambra01.

Note that it was published in PLoS Medicine, a journal for which I have no editorial input.

pj said...

Heh - don't intend to pin it on you Matt.

Actually, the comments section was used quite effectively, you can see how blog posts criticising the paper's statistics appeared within the month of publication (in February 2008), and comments on the PLoS website a little after that. But peer reviewed papers making essentially the same arguments did not appear until Summer 2010!

I think the Kirsch article represented a failure of peer review (it would have been nice to see the reviewers' reports), perhaps no one with a decent statistical background was involved?