Paleonet: Scientific death-knell of databases?

Gregory Burzynski g.burzynski at
Thu Nov 12 13:48:39 GMT 2015

I honestly feel that pedanticness over the citation of a couple of brachiopods in one database is not enough of a case to throw out the entirety of a powerful, newly-emerging tool in the field (i.e. large online databases). Paleonet, set up and run by paleontologists, is a direct contradiction to many of the slippery-slope arguments in this paper. Also, the tone seems to be accusatory with no actual evidence of intentional wrong-doing by the people running the database.

No need to throw out the baby with the bathwater.


Greg Burzynski
Ph.D. Candidate in Ediacaran Paleontology
Department of Geological Sciences and Geological Engineering
Queen's University
Kingston, ON
K7L 3N6

Office: Bruce 349
E-mail: g.burzynski at
From: Paleonet <paleonet-bounces at> on behalf of Christian Emig <brachnet at>
Sent: November 12, 2015 2:15 AM
To: PaleoNet PaleoNet
Subject: Paleonet: Scientific death-knell of databases?


A freshly issued paper:
Emig C.C., Bitner M.A. & Álvarez F. (2015). Scientific death-knell against databases? Errors induced by database manipulations and its consequences. Carnets Geol.,15 (16), 231-238.

As authors of the World Brachiopoda Database hosted by WoRMS, we decided to publish what may appear as the visible part of an iceberg (!) concerning WoRMS as well as many other online databases.

Best regards,

Christian C. Emig, Aleksandra Bitner, Fernando Alvarez
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