During a rebuttal period, with reviews that show a strong indication of overall reject, can I submit the paper to another venue (without violating concurrent submission rules)? The submission deadline in the other venue is before the final response of the current venue.

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    The unedited question opened with "If the rebuttal responses show a strong indication of overall reject," which doesn't seem right. I presume the OP mean "reviews" rather than "rebuttal responses," so I edited. @seq: Please revise if you meant something else – user2768 Dec 12 '19 at 12:57
  • It's a paper from a presentation at a conference intended for the published proceedings? It concerns me the conference might have some proprietary interest in the paper, especially if there was any financial support given to the presentation. It might not even be acceptable to withdraw and then submit elsewhere. Though I am by no means confident of this point. – puppetsock Dec 12 '19 at 15:07

Can I submit my paper somewhere else during rebuttal period?

No: Your paper is under review, submitting elsewhere would be a parallel submission. You could withdraw your paper and then submit elsewhere. Albeit, withdrawal seems unethical at this late stage.

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    You may also consider "decline to revise" (if available) prior to notifying the editor of the withdrawal. – user3024069 Dec 12 '19 at 12:24
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    @user3024069 decline to revise surely isn't available during a rebuttal period, since authors are being asked to respond to reviews, so there's nothing to decline. I suppose authors could decline to respond, but the paper remains under review. – user2768 Dec 12 '19 at 12:52
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    "withdrawal seems unethical at this late stage." Why, though? If they liked to see the paper at the conference, they shouldn't have given it an assessment that is clearly leaning towards rejection. – lighthouse keeper Dec 12 '19 at 18:05
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    After all, the overall review period would probably be shorter if they didn't have a rebuttal phase. In that sense, not allowing that papers with a clearly negative evaluation are withdrawn (by deeming it unethical) feels like "taking the papers hostage". – lighthouse keeper Dec 12 '19 at 18:11
  • Re. "withdrawal seems unethical at this late stage" - withdrawing a submission after negative reviews isn't uncommon, from what I've seen, nor is it considered unethical. Indeed, some conferences (e.g. ICLR) have a formal withdrawal policy (see iclr.cc/Conferences/2020/CallForPapers), which suggests it's perfectly normal and not frowned upon. As they say, "Authors have the right to withdraw papers from consideration at any time until paper notification." Many authors have exercised that right this year: openreview.net/group?id=ICLR.cc/2020/… – Stuart Golodetz Dec 12 '19 at 20:41

If you want to submit elsewhere, the proper course is to formally withdraw your paper. Send a note to the editor. Then you are free to submit elsewhere. Don't make assumptions.

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