Wednesday, January 09, 2008

A Statistical Summary of the JONES Papers

Earlier, both Pat and I had discussed how Steven Jones had been bragging about the number of "peer reviewed" papers that had been published at his self-styled journal, and how the true number was only a fraction of what he claimed. We did not address the type and quality of the papers though, so I fired up my copy of Excel and did some low-grade data mining (send me an e-mail if you want to see the data set) and categorized the papers listed on their main page.

There are actually 45 papers listed, they claim 43, but two of them are actually interviews, so I am assuming they are omitting those. That is just a guess though, you could reasonably not count many other papers for similar reasons. Four of the papers are not actually original works, but correspondence, including a response from NIST, who I seriously doubt was interested in being submitted to such a prestigious publication.

In any case, out of those remaining 43, Frank Legge was the most prolific author, with an amazing 7 papers, or 16% of the total. Legge is actually one of the more educated authors, with a PhD in chemistry, although oddly enough, none of his papers are within his speciality, a trend that continues throughout most of the papers. The next two most prolific authors are Steven Jones and Kevin Ryan who appear on 5 and 4 papers (two of them are on the same paper) respectively. Why are these names significant? Well, look at the JONES homepage:

Our mission is to provide evidence-based, peer-reviewed research that furthers the cause of truth and justice. More about our efforts toward this goal can be found at the website for Scholars for 9/11 Truth and Justice.

Steven Jones, Kevin Ryan, and Frank Legge co-editors

They are the editors of the "journal". Fourteen of the 43 papers, or nearly a third of the papers accepted by the editors, are written by the editors themselves.

It gets even worse if you look at the qualifications of the authors. Of the 43, only 23 were at least partially authored by someone with a PhD. Note, this still does not imply that the author even has experience in the field they are writing on, as I pointed out, 7 of those 23 are by Frank Legge, and not in the field of chemistry. Once again, it is mostly the editors, of those 23 PhD level papers, 12, or 52% are by our two PhD editors (Kevin Ryan only has a bachelor's degree). Even worse, 3 of these papers are rebuttals to the no plane theories. While they ironically are among the best work published, they are about as scientifically relevant as publishing a paper arguing that the dinosaurs were not made extinct by the eating habits of Fred Flintstone. If we take these papers out of the count, that brings the number up to a ridiculous 60%.

Explain to me once again how this is a "peer reviewed" academic journal? I am now going to e-mail this post to Steven Jones, and see if I can get it accepted as a paper in his journal.

Update: This could go on forever, but I forgot to mention that 1 of those PhD level papers is a rebuttal by Dr. Frank Greening to a previous paper, and 3 of them are by theology or English professors. So in summary, of the original 43 papers, the numbers of papers written by someone with a PhD in a science, who is not one of the editors of the journal themselves, and who is not merely rebutting another previously held conspiracy theory comes out to a grand total of... 4, or a mere 9%.

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