If you need help with online teaching or other challenges in academia arising from the COVID-19 crisis, we have prepared this FAQ to get you started.
87

In mathematics, there are several reasons to post to the arXiv: It provides free access to papers that might otherwise be hidden behind paywalls. Of course you could achieve this by posting on your web page, but your web page may move or disappear, while the arXiv is far more stable. This means it's better for archival purposes and it's better suited for ...


83

I think there are basically two cases here: The student is presenting or leading discussion on your work as part of a "journal club" sort of series, and the abstract is your abstract because they're talking about your paper. The student is baldly and ridiculously plagiarizing. I think a good way to approach this is to assume case #1, and make contact with ...


77

Yes, you should check with any co-authors before publicly posting a preprint of work that is not yet published. They may prefer that you not post it at this time (e.g. if they have a particular timeline in mind for when they want to publicly share the work, given other related things they are working on). Even if they have no reason to object, you should ...


64

Submitting to ArXiv is a form of publication. You always need the consent of all coauthors to publish anything, anywhere.


61

Making the paper accessible to everyone who can't look behind the paywall might hurt the journal's publishing company a little bit by diverting some demand. However, it won't really hurt the people you have been dealing with. Moreover, the journal has given you explicit permission to publish a pre-print, so you're not going against their stated request. At ...


50

There might be any number of reasons. You might try to contact the author(s) to get more information. But... (not all with the same likelihood) They might have left academia for various reasons and not bothered. Is the CV also old? They might have incorporated the key ideas into another paper with a very different title. You search is then fruitless. ...


41

arXiv.org is a multi-institutional e-print repository funded by universities and other research organisations costing hundreds of thousands of dollars to run. It's purpose is rapid dissemination of papers and to provide a permanent open access archive for the professional research community. Submission of papers is in principle open to anyone but those ...


39

If you publish your paper on ArXiv before it is published in a peer-reviewed journal, others may steal your work and publish it peer-reviewed before you do and thus take the scientific credit. It’s difficult to attack those people since the ArXiv is not peer-reviewed. This assumes that peer-reviewed publications determine scientific credit, which may be ...


39

arXiv is a respected repository for physics and math preprints. In some fields of physics, it is actually the primary venue through which new papers are read. viXra is a site for people, almost exclusively cranks, who cannot or will not put their material on arXiv. Don't use it.


39

Most journals now allow and even encourage the use of preprint servers. Some, however, still prohibit it on the notion that it is competition with their own publication of the article, or even consider it self-plagiarism. This tends to be field-dependent as well: some fields (e.g., physics, mathematics) are very liberal in policy, while others tend to be ...


37

I have just received an email from the editor and I am writing it here Dear Dr. * * *, We cannot prevent an author to upload her/his paper to Arxiv. However, because of the double-blind process applied in Communication Letters, we don’t encourage it. There is only one restriction: Your paper should stand alone without any supplementary material and/or ...


37

After forwarding my email to the director of the publishing company, he put the paper online, so it appears that this was an administrative issue. I thank everyone for their input and apologise for the noise.


36

I believe the first thing you need to do is to contact and email the editor in chief of that journal and give him/her a link to your arxiv paper. He/She a long with the editorial board have to retract the article (hopefully, with a big red X stating that the authors have plagiarised citing your arxiv work).


36

In mathematics (maybe in other fields too), one would put at the end of the introduction a statement like "After obtaining the results in this paper, we learned of related work by X. In particular, X obtained ...." Here the "..." would be a description like "a stronger form of our Theorem 7" or "a weaker form of our Theorem 7" or "a result related to our ...


36

If you can prove or at least make a convincing case for the conjecture in the special case you need, I'd do the following: Describe the conjecture in the special case Prove or make the convincing case in the special case Write "in a previous draft, we expected this conjecture to hold generally. However, it has subsequently been shown ..." If you can't or ...


32

As I see it, the main reasons to use arXiv and similar preprint servers are: To disseminate your paper without waiting for the peer review and publishing process. This is a serious issue - in mathematics, for example, peer review often takes a year or more, and it can be several more years before your paper gets to the front of the queue to actually appear ...


32

Your collaborator is a jerk. Don't listen to his nonsense about you being naive; that sounds more like he's trying to justify his bad behavior to himself. You are quite right that this is not appropriate professional behavior. However, I don't think it rises to the sort of ethics violation that could threaten a career. Now that you have a proof of the ...


29

Cite relevant literature Since you have the option of adding a citation to a relevant source, you should do it. It improves the paper by making it a more useful reference, and comparing and contrasting the results might also be useful. Priority If relevant, use a phrase like "A very recent preprint A claims this and that.", or even, if your results are ...


28

There is not much of a "formal feedback" system associated with the arxiv. I say "not much" instead of "none" because the arxiv apparently does do some degree of automatic tracking of citations to its papers. For instance this arxiv submission contains a link to a MO post in which my paper is (briefly) mentioned. I had not seen that post before, so that ...


27

The OSF provides a general open preprint infrastructure that is connected to a range of preprint services. Importantly, it is not owned by a commercial publisher. It supports a number of discipline-specific preprint services many of which use the ArXiv name under licence. The list of preprint services is growing over time. For further information go to: ...


26

It seems to me that this question is less about the arxiv per se and more about how to navigate doing research in a very fast moving academic field. I get the impression that arXiv is more than just putting something on a personal website. It's certainly different. The main differences are: (i) Many more people will see your paper. (ii) Your paper ...


24

Ones more aimed at social sciences (that I am aware of) are; Social Science Research Network (SSRN) The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) The recently-founded SocArXiv (link to search and upload preprints) SSRN is dominated by economic and legal research (and NBER is obviously focused on economics). Another I recently became aware of is ...


24

It seems that neither option presented below are taking new submissions. I keep the answer here for historical interest. One option is: Philica which occupies a bit of a strange place. It is a free, open-access journal that publishes immediately and in any discipline. The website comes with a non-traditional review system. It is in between what one may ...


23

First of all: no risk whatsoever of scooping the paper It's never possible to achieve "no risk whatsoever" when dealing with human beings. The best way to trust a person is to know them for a long time, but even that is no guarantee. However, I don't think scooping is a serious concern in this scenario. Alice has already submitted the paper, which is ...


22

Let me add one point not mentioned by other answers so far. In fast moving fields (e.g., most of computer science), a great benefit of publishing technical reports in recognised/citable series (at least an ISSN) and/or arXiv is to get a citable reference before publication in a more serious venue, such as a conference, or a journal. So the workflow is as ...


21

You should generally use the service that most people in your field uses. In my subfield of physics people follow the daily postings on arXiv, so that's the natural choice for me. I imagine a preprint would be effectively invisible if posted elsewhere, except to someone who happens to be browsing my Google Scholar profile, ResearchGate profile or website. ...


20

It is useful for readers if you distinguish your work from previous work early on in a paper, typically in a "related work" section. If your paper is being peer reviewed, distinguishing your work from previous work is an important aspect of demonstrating novelty. It does not matter that you didn't find out about the previous work until after you had results....


20

Not all peer-reviewed papers are solid, and not all non peer-reviewed papers are unsolid. Judge for yourself. Seriously, sometimes people cannot be bothered to fight with reviewers about minutia, relevance, impact, significance; worse, sometimes people have a problem to get a paper published in a journal that later proves to be seminal to a field. The ...


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