Climate of the Past and plagiarism

24 September 2015

Recently, Climate of the Past (CP) faced an unacceptable case of plagiarism. One of our authors alerted Copernicus Publications that somebody, unknown of them, had published a paper in another open-access journal, showing a very high similarity to their CP paper without refering to it. The plagiarised paper had identical figures and captions to the original publication and large sections of the text were also copied with only small modifications to the wording.

The response to this issue was as follows: Copernicus alerted CP co-editors-in-chief who immediately reacted by requiring Martin Rasmussen, as managing director of Copernicus, to contact the editor of the journal and the founding director of the publishing group, asking for retraction or withdrawal of the paper. The authors also independently wrote to the editors of the journal asking for retraction of the paper. The other journal management agreed upon the evident plagiarism, we are now happy that this issue has been solved quickly with the retraction of the paper from the journal and their website. We are sincerely grateful for the fast reaction and support from Copernicus Publications.

This story reminds us to remain vigilant against plagiarism and react quickly if fraud is detected. Plagiarism software is used routinely by Copernicus Publications, but this in itself is not a guarantee against plagiarism and indeed the case described above of blatant plagiarism registered only a 6% similarity report. We encourage our readers and authors to contact either Copernicus Publicationsor one of the co-editors-in-chief of Climate of the Past as soon as possible if they suspect any kind of potential case of plagiarism.

Climate of the Past co-editors-in-chief