The rising popularity of uncontrolled peer-to-peer networking is having an effect on the classic role of peer review for research validation, one of the core functions of academic publishing, reports the New York Times. But if some researchers are worried by the potential loss of rigor in the assessment process, others see it as liberating. “Having a paper peer-reviewed is not necessarily an indication that the paper is right,” said Subodh Patil, a post-doctoral physicist at the École Polytechnique in Paris. “We all peer-review, but it is no longer as significant as it was before.” ArXiv.org, which emerged in 1991...

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