“Cluttering up the literature.”
This is the sort of complaint that I see from time to time. And when I saw it, I never got why people got upset about it. There was something about it that always seemed snooty to me.
It occurred to me that I never quite got the ire because in my scientific research, I am operating in a low information environment. I’m confident that I have surveyed almost all the relevant literature for some of the species I work with. There’s not a huge number of people in the field. Every new paper gives something new to work with. And the rate of directly relevant new papers is measured in a few per year.
A lot of people, however, are working in high information environments. Forget about knowing all there is about a single species; so much is known that people have problems knowing about one small aspect of one species. Relevant papers probably come out weekly.
Intellectually, I knew are more active than others. But I don’t think I appreciated how much that affects how people view the “problems” of the scientific literature. Scientist in high information environments desperately want filters. They want glamour mags to tell them what’s important. Scientists in low information environments want more. They want to know why is nobody researching what to them are completely obvious questions.
I’m a pebble in the avalanche