Let's say that I got a paper accepted to a nice journal (feels so good!), in fact of a very reputed publisher. Then, the press / editorial office asks me to submit all the source files for preparing the proof for publication and I have submitted all the source materials (in word / .tex format).

Here it is worthy to mention that the accepted manuscript is already respecting the journal's format (closely). But of course, the press will completely change the article's looks to match the journal's own proprietary style(s) etc.

A few weeks later, I receive the proof (in the native journal format) and much to my surprise, I see that the original mathematical equations in the manuscript got vandalized (in terms of alignment, even missing some equations etc.), subfigures (in a whole figure environment being named as a, b, c, d, ...) getting copy pasted (even including the subcaptions etc.), texts running across the borders, tables being sloppily copy pasted as images and even what not the mathematical symbols in bibliography are typeset as images!...

If that is the case, could you advise, whether I can mention each and every mistake that is present in the proof that is sent to me?

Honorable mention: I deeply feel bad for my paper, because, even after giving all the source files for compiling the proof, the typeset is being subpar given the journal / publishers standards (IMO).

Update: Today,

  1. I got an email from the publisher that the corrected proof is available online --> which accoring to their definition means ready for production.

  2. Upon seeing the so-called corrected proof I found that it was an exact replica of the one they sent before.

I thank all of you for your suggestions :)

  • 6
    Yes, in decent journals which are not math-specialised, I have had to go through every single mistake. They were not bad journals, just not really well equipped to handle math. Be prepared to have to do so. Aug 2, 2018 at 9:13
  • 1
    I'd report all the mistakes that I found. I'd also provide (if I didn't already) the pdf version of the paper produced from my source file, so that I can show them how it's supposed to look. Aug 2, 2018 at 15:35

1 Answer 1


If there are so many issues, I would suggest to not mention every last one of them but instead write a short email to the editor.
Don't go blaming people, ask if there is something you can do, maybe you sent your sources in the wrong format, maybe there was a misunderstanding.

If this journal frequently publishes mathematical papers, they should have proper ways to do things and what happened here is most likely not a small typo that can be mentioned while reading the proof, but a deeper problem that should be solved before doing the final proofreading.
(If, on the other hand, they only use MSWord 2003 and just copied stuff from your .tex-file or PDF, then maybe you need to reconsider your choice of journal...)

  • Because this publisher, as I noticied, in general, outsource the typesetting and it is not done in house. As a matter of fact, they also use Latex for compilation. Since, I used their own class files for typesetting the manuscript (up till acceptance), I am pretty confident about the source files. So, I am not sure yet. (Nevertheless, +1 for dont go blaming people) Aug 2, 2018 at 8:12
  • 1
    +1 and I'll add that you should not write to the journal's editors (the ones that handled peer review), but the person who sent you the proofs. This is their job.
    – Allure
    Aug 2, 2018 at 10:31
  • 3
    I generally agree, but if you actually have a list of errors, you might as well provide them. It will make the number of cycles of return and repair smaller, hopefully. Don't expect their first fix to necessarily correct all issues.
    – Buffy
    Aug 2, 2018 at 11:02
  • @Buffy I think your comment with the aforementioned answer gives a collective answer. Aug 2, 2018 at 16:12

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .