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February 4, 1998

Authors vs Contributors: Accuracy, Accountability, and Responsibility—Reply

Author Affiliations

Margaret A.WinkerMD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 1998;279(5):356-357. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-279-5-jbk0204

In Reply.— Dr Greenfield, assuming, in the face of ample evidence to the contrary, that all those who now appear on the bylines of articles actually contributed, cannot imagine readers being interested in a system that tells them what contributors actually did. He, like the DeBakeys, prefers the present system of obfuscation. Were he to sit on an academic promotions committee or have to adjudicate an authorship dispute, he would welcome our proposal. Two of us (L.E., D.R.) developed the idea in part because our experience hearing numerous cases on the Public Health Service Commission on Research Integrity convinced us that greater and more public accountability for authors was required. Junior faculty, as Dr Kaufman notes, should be particularly pleased.