1

PI recently submitted a manuscript we have been working on, but the author order has been swapped without our knowledge. The manuscript has long indicated the author order being A, B,... E*(corresponding author/PI), but now it was recently changed to B, A,... E* on the submission details form. The submitted manuscript title page oddly indicates the same A,B,...E* order. Has anyone else come across this before, and is it worth asking PI about it?

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Things happen. Online manuscript systems can be confusing and frustrating. If you are not paying attention, mistakes can be made. Assuming the PI did the submission, I would mention it to the them. Something along the lines of

I noticed the order of authors is different between the title page and the submission form. I believe the title page of A, B, C is the correct order. If it is, we should make sure we fix the submission form before publication. If the order is now B, A, C, I would like to discuss the change.

I would do this in person and in a friendly manner. If B did the submission, things are messier, but I would still mention it to the PI directly. If C did the submission, you can email them directly noting the discrepancy.

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