BionMed News

BioMed Proofreading® LLC’s principle of the “Five No’s”

The Washington Post reported on March 27, 2015, that BioMed Central recently retracted 43 scientific articles in the life sciences due to “‘fabricated’ peer reviews.” Elizabeth Moylan, BioMed Central’s senior editor for research integrity, wrote that some of the “manipulations” appeared to have been conducted by agencies that offer language-editing and submission assistance to non-English speaking authors.

We are certainly aware that there are writing service companies that advertise “article ghostwriting” and “guaranteed publication,” which causes major distress to service companies like ours that invest tremendous effort into having life-science professionals edit English-language articles, and severely compromises our competitiveness in China. Because these companies undertake to “guarantee publication” of English academic articles, they have no scruples about the means they use to achieve such goals.

During its 12 years of operation, BioMed Proofreading® LLC has consistently upheld the principle of the “Five No’s”:

  1. No to ghostwriting. Occasionally clients ask whether we engage in the ghostwriting of SCI papers in English if the data and results are provided. “No” is our consistent response. This is not because we lack the capability, but because we believe that this conduct is inappropriate.
  2. No to ghostwriting of responses. Clients frequently ask whether we can provide substitute responses to the amendment opinions of journal draft reviewers. “No” is our consistent response. Only qualified, capable, and authoritative parties can answer specific scientific research questions. The services that we can provide are to translate responses that have been provided in the author’s native language into English, and then polish the English translation.
  3. No to guaranteed publication. There are also clients who ask whether we can guarantee the publication of their manuscripts following our editing and polishing of the English. “No” is our consistent response. We can only guarantee to meet publication standards with respect to language. A true English-language manuscript-editing company will not “guarantee publication,” because it is not an academic journal publisher. Whether scientific research results are published is determined by multiple factors:
  • is the scientific research topic cutting-edge;biomed
  • are the research results reliable as well as compelling;
  • are the research results reliable as well as compelling;
  • are the scientific research discoveries new;
  • is the discussion of results rational and thorough;
  • is the article composition orderly, clear, and logical;
  • is the English writing clear, appropriate, standard English and logical, etc.
  1. No to hiring an “English editor” whose mother tongue isn’t English. In addition to professional testing of the English editing and English proofreading ability, when doctorate holders apply for work, we also test whether they were born and raised in a family and educational environment where English was spoken. If the answer is no, we do not hire them.
  2. No to employing English editors who lack training in the life sciences. At present, we continue to focus exclusively on the life sciences (biology, biochemistry, medicine, and pharmaceuticals), including chemistry. For this reason, if holders of doctorates in English linguistics apply, we do not hire them.

It was once said in antiquity that “essays should pass the test of thousands of ages.” Once an article is published, it wi
ll undergo the tests of science, the public, and time. If fraudulent means are used to publish articles, this is equivalent to burying a ticking time bomb on your path through life that is enough to destroy your career, your integrity, and
your ethics.  BioMed Proofreading® LLC wishes to engage in a common partnership with the scientific community, and firmly as well as confidently advance upon the paths of science and ethics.

Charles Lee

Chief manager of BMP


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