[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
August 2, 1971

The Importance Of Not Being Cited

Author Affiliations

Greenbrae, Calif

JAMA. 1971;217(5):698-699. doi:10.1001/jama.1971.03190050154025

To the Editor.—  In 1964, an article on cybernetics and a model of disease was published in Aerospace Medicine.1 Reprint requests numbered 87 and many came from various research institutes of Czechoslovakia. The article had a profound effect on that country, for shortly afterward a reform movement in the Czech Communist Party culminated in the destruction of the Dubcek government in 1968. Yet, despite such a relevant, meaningful, and valid study in cybernetics, my article has not appeared in the bibliography of any scientific publication and thus has never been cited in the Science Citation Index.What can all this mean? There are five possibilities. (1) The article is too profound and difficult to understand for the present generation of scientists. (2) The article is a threat to the Establishment. (3) It is not radical chic2 to cite an article that has never been cited. (4) There is