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This is your belated April fools joke?! No?

Marcus Arvan

Yeah I forgot to post one this year, and the bird paper presented a belated opportunity too good to pass up! ;)


I never formate my paper according to the journal guidelines before acceptance. I never once had a paper rejected or not sent out because of that (at least not, as far as I know.) It is only after a paper is accepted that I do that.

Marcus Arvan

Amanda: right, so what is the f-ing deal with them? Why are they even a thing and why do you always have to check a box (lying) that your paper conforms to them? ;)


Do you have to check a box? Hmmm.. I've never noticed that.

And eh, they are just one of many, many, BS aspects with the entire journal process, alongside the BS commitment to blind review, to turning papers back in a timely manner, with stated word limits that are completely ignored with almost every published paper, etc. haha yes, I can't hold back my cynicism here!

Neil Levy

The AJP doesn't have format requirements for submission. That seems to me to be the right policy: I'm happy (well, happy enough) to put the paper in your stupid format when you've accepted it.

Amanda: I have had papers sent back because they weren't properly formatted on three or four occasions. It's never the editors: it's editorial staff who process the paper before the editors get to see it. In one case, the paper was sent back to me three times before I managed to get it right to their satisfaction. I now avoid those journals.

Marcus Arvan

Neil: yeah, I had it happen to me too just a few weeks ago—and the journal had a *really* idiosyncratic reference formatting system that took me around 4 hours to do, and I still mucked it up after the managing editor sent it back to me.


Interesting Neil, maybe I've just been lucky. But if that happened, I would take your route too!

Remco Heesen

Anecdotally I've heard that this is one respect in which philosophy journals behave relatively well compared to journals in other fields. That is, most philosophy journals don't make you jump through formatting hoops unless and until your paper is accepted. Some state this policy explicitly, e.g., the Journal of Philosophy has this in its author guidelines: "The editors are willing to read and evaluate a manuscript that does not meet these seven guidelines, provided the author agrees to meet them before submitting a final manuscript."

Whereas (I've heard) in other fields it is fairly common to have to meet formatting requirements on initial submission.


It happened to me recently, and the email requesting revisions came from the editor. It had taken them four weeks before requesting the changes before sending the paper out to an associate editor. That's just four wasted four weeks. How frustrating.

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