In digging up material for a book, I ran across a pair of quasi-identical articles on an unusual topic. The articles were so similar that I sent word to our friends at the Retraction Watch web site, who dug into the history of those articles. Today, Retraction Watch published their report about those two reports:
Journal to retract article from 2000 that plagiarized one from 1984
When it comes to plagiarism, there is apparently no statute of limitations.
That’s one lesson one might take from this tale of two papers, one published in 1984 in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology (AJOG), and the other published in 2000 in the Medical Journal of The Islamic Republic of Iran (MJIRI). Both are titled “The use of breast stimulation to prevent postdate pregnancy.” …
In a note to us late last year, Marc Abrahams, the editor of the Annals of Improbable Research, flagged the apparent plagiarism. In January, we asked Hamid Baradaran, the editor of the MJIRI, if the journal was aware of the overlap. Baradaran, of the Iran University of Medical Sciences, said he’d follow up, and earlier this month he said that the journal had decided to retract the paper….