Yesterday, I pulled out of the HICSS conference. After attempting to revise the paper for the conference, and looking over the reviewers’ comments (one in four recommended it be rejected, the other three were guardedly positive), I realized that it just wasn’t ready. I’ve been having trouble with that lately. From now on: I only submit finished–and polished–papers on finished research. I have a course reduction next semester, and I’ve decided that for the first half of 2004, I am not going anywhere. I’m staying in Buffalo and finishing up projects and submitting them for publication.
The same day, I received an email from a researcher I know of, but have never met. He claimed that a figure in the chapter on the Zapatista web Maria Garrido and I just had published was, somehow, taken from the work of one of his colleagues. It was not clear to me what, exactly, the claim was, but the suggestion itself was highly insulting. I wrote what I think was a response that was relatively polite, indicating that his colleague was mistaken and that the figure was original, was created using data we alone collected, and was inspired by nothing more than commonsense visual design. (It’s the figure over on my research page, a page that needs to be rewritten.) I was stewing most of Friday and I’m still stewing. I mentioned it to a colleague here at UB, who said I should pursue it actively: contact the editors of the volume, and the like. After all, reputations are important in the academic world. But I really hate this sort of thing. I would have preferred it just never had been raised, though I suppose I am happy to be aware of what was being said behind my back.
As for the person who raised the claim, he did so in such a way that I am left unsure whether it is his own suggestion or one of his annonymous associate. The tone of the email made it clear that he was not neutral in the matter. At least now I know one person in my field with whom I will avoid working. I wonder if that means I am becoming a more experienced scholar? :)
Oh, and it’s rainy. I need some good news soon.