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Part XVI: The Science Case (2717 查看)

March 03, 2013 07:31PM
【Note: The PDF file is more reader-friendly. Click the title to open it.】

【Due to the size limitation of the webpage,the notes and appendixes are not shown. The PDF file contains everything.】


Shamelessness Shouldn’t Be Anyone’s Nature
──An Open Letter to Nature (Part XVI) & to Science


Xin Ge, Ph. D.

Columbia, SC, USA



【Summary】In October, 2001, Dr. Xiao Chuanguo, an associate professor at New York University, reported to Science magazine that Fang Zhouzi, who was reported by Science two months earlier as a fraud fighter in China, plagiarized a paper published in Science. Science exonerated Fang from the charge in about 3 weeks. However, many Chinese scholars still believe that Fang did commit plagiarism in that case. In this part of the open letter to Nature, I first give a comprehensive overview of the story; then point out the misconception and methodology flaw in Science’s investigation of the case; and finally answer this simple question: Did Fang plagiarize Science paper? My finding is that 33 of 37 sentences (89%) in Fang’s article were obtained by directly translating or “paraphrasing” two of Science papers, and only 127 of 1,525 Chinese characters (8.3%) were supposedly Fang’s own.

【Content】

Fang’s Plagiarism History: The Science Case
The Story
1. The Three Musketeers
2. Science’s Verdict
3. Aftermath
An Investigation of Science’s Investigation
1. The Definition of Plagiarism
2. The Theory of Translation
Re-investigation on the Science Case
Table: A Complete Comparison between Fang’s article and Greene’s paper
1. Plagiarism of Structure
2. Plagiarism of Content
3. More Stealing
Conclusions
Notes
Appendix A
. Fang Zhouzi. Solving the “Compilation” Dilemma with a Normal Intelligence─Reply to Associate Professor Bian Jianchao of School of Public Health in Medical College at Fudan University.
Appendix B. Fang Zhouzi. The Hacks of a Liar Gang UP: A Reply to Dr. Zhao Jijun.



Fang’s Plagiarism History: The Science Case

Although Fang started his literary thief career in the early 1980s, and he committed plagiarism many times in 1990s, he was not caught until 2001, when 3 Chinese scholars found he plagiarized a paper just published in Science magazine. So, let’s start our story from that case.

The Story


Major characters: the 3 fraud busters, the 2 victims, and the thief
Clockwise from top left: Dr. Bian Jianchao (web ID: Ke Hua) of Fudan University; Dr. Zhao Jijun (web ID: Traveler) of University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Dr. Xiao Chuanguo (web ID: Professor Hun) of New York University; Fang Zhouzi, a secret agent of a U. S. Bio-Info Company; Mr. Joshua D. Greene, a graduate student at Princeton University; Dr. Laura Helmuth, a writer and editor of Science magazine.
(All titles and affiliations were as of 2001.)


1. The Three Musketeers

On October 4, 2001, Fang published an article on Southern Weekend, entitled “Solving Moral Dilemmas Scientifically?”[1] The article contains 1,525 Chinese characters in 7 paragraphs. In the first four paragraphs, Fang introduced two moral dilemmas, the “trolley dilemma” and “footbridge dilemma,” and discussed their implications; in the next two paragraphs, in exactly 500 Chinese characters, Fang introduced the experimental results of “psychologists at Princeton University of the United States;” and in the last paragraph, Fang discuss the significance of the results. Fang gave no references or citations in the article. In other words, to a normal Chinese reader, it seems that besides the fifth and sixth paragraphs, which were based on the paper by Dr. Greene, et al., published in Science magazine on Sept. 14, 2001[2], the rest of the article, 1,025 Chinese characters, two thirds of the total, were all Fang’s own writing. In addition, Fang used one of the images in Greene’s paper without attribution. In 2007, Fang re-published the article in one of his books, and the only modification was the addition of one more image, supposedly stolen from other source, and an artwork, stolen from the website of Memory Loss and the Brain. (See the figure below).


Evidences of theft
Upper panel: The page image of Greene’s paper in Science (293:2105-8), the portions highlighted in yellow and the image in purple box were supposedly stolen by Fang Zhouzi; the green box inset is the page image of Dr. Laura Helmuth’s article[3], red boxed portions were supposedly stolen by Fang.
Lower panel: Left: The page image of Fang’s article, “Solving Moral Dilemmas Scientifically?” in Oct. 4, 2001’s Southern Weekend. Red boxes designate the portions of text and image stolen from Greene’s paper; red lines designate the sentences stolen from Dr.Laura Helmuth’s article; Right: The page image of Fang’s article which was re-published in 2007 in a book, Approaching to Science with Fang Zhouzi, the portions highlighted in yellow were stolen from Greene’s paper; redlined sentences were stolen from Dr. Laura Helmuth’s article; the image in purple oval circle was stolen from a yet unidentified source; the image in red box was stolen from Memory Loss & the Brain website, the image was copyrighted by Ann L. Myers in 2000 (blue box inset); and the image in purple box was stolen from Greene’s paper.


Six days after the publication of Fang’s article, Dr. Bian Jianchao wrote a private letter to Fang, blaming him for using a translated article as his own[4]. Fang responded to Dr. Bian with a ferocious and vituperative article, scolding him, attacking him, denying any wrong doings, and mocking at Dr. Bian’s supposedly bad English, which, according to Fang, was so bad that he was even unable to provide a comparison between the original English and the Chines allegedly translated from the English[5]. However, right after the publication of Fang’s retaliatory article, Dr. Zhao Jijun posted the comparison between Fang’s Chinese and Greene’s English on the internet[6]. As expected, Fang’s response was even more ferocious, with more scolding, more attacking, and more denying[7]. In the article, Fang demanded Dr. Zhao to demonstrate that what he wrote was a “compilation” “strictly” based upon the original paper, and that he had to follow the rules for academic papers when writing a popular science article. However, Fang immediately disqualified Dr. Zhao from doing either, and, unlike what he had normally been doing when refuting an allegation, he dared not to enclose Dr. Zhao’s post in his article.

It was revealed in Dr. Bian’s letter to Fang and Dr. Zhao’s post that the case had been reported to Southern Weekend, Science magazine, and the original author[8].Of course, everyone knows now that the person who reported the case to Science magazine was Professor Hun (Dr. Xiao Chuanguo). According to Dr. Xiao’s recollection in 2011, the reason he reported the case to Science ten years ago was because Fang was accusing an old neural scientist of plagiarism, and Fang dared his critics to report his own plagiarism case to Science[9]. It seems that Dr. Xiao’s first story is incorrect, because obviously he was referring the case of academician Yang Xiongli (杨雄里), which occurred in December, 2001, and by that time, Science had already finished their investigation on Fang’s case. However, Dr. Xiao’s second story is backed by evidence. According a post posted on Oct. 10, 2001, Fang did challenge his critics with a threatening tone:

“Do you have the gall to ‘report’ that I ‘translated’ without authorization using your real identity? Science does not accept anonymous report. On the other hand, both Science magazine and the authors of the paper would certainly welcome my introduction to their work, not to mention that they have no right to require me to ask their permission before my popularizing their work.”[10]

And Dr. Xiao wrote 10 years later:

“I reviewed the data with a few professors and scholars, the plagiarism was too obvious. Since you want us to report, then we’ll do it. So I took the lead, the Editor-in-Chief of Science mainly communicated with me directly.”[11]

Science’s investigation concluded by the end of October, 2001, and their conclusion was first released by Fang on Nov. 4, 2001, when he published a short article entitled The Truth about “Mountains of Ironclad Evidence for Fang Zhouzi’s Plagiarism.” Since Fang has been using this article extensively to defend himself whenever the case came back to haunt him[12], I translate the full text below:

“Recently, several e-friends from China wrote to tell me that an article entitled ‘Mountains of Ironclad Evidence for Fang Zhouzi’s Plagiarism,’ authored by ‘Traveler’ (i.e. Zhao Jijun who is conducting research in the department of physics at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a science doctor in condensed matter physics from Nanjing University’s physics department), had been posted on every major forum in China, in an attempt to damage my reputation. The article used an approach of taking out of context to conduct Chinese-English comparison, slandering that I, in a science essay introducing the latest scientific achievement abroad published in Southern Weekend, Solving Moral Dilemmas Scientifically?, plagiarized a paper published in Science magazine of the United States (He found the original paper based on a note at the end of my article). To the slander by this accomplice of a liar, I have refuted before. The online liar Professor Hun had filed a false report to Science magazine, accusing me of plagiarism. Science investigated the case. Some people asked Science for investigation result. In response, Science pointed out, although my article did not meet the standard of American news reports, but an allegation of plagiarism would be difficult to uphold, because I said in the article the work was conducted by researchers at Princeton University, I didn’t use first person to imply the research was done by myself, and I didn’t copy the wordings of Science paper (i. e. I used my own language for the introduction.)

“Zhao Jijun’s allegation has already constituted a malicious libel against me; I’ll pursue his legal responsibility when necessary.”[13]


Of course, the “necessary” time would never come. It is worth noting that based upon the article, Fang knew exactly it was Dr. Xiao (Professor Hun) who reported the case to Science. However, nine years later, after Dr. Xiao’s arrest due to “Brawl in Beijing,” Fang, obviously trying to cover up the cause of their feud, lied to a news medium by saying that he didn’t know it was Professor Hun who reported the case to Science in 2001, he thought that person was Dr. Zhao Jijun[14].

2. Science’s Verdict

The following is the complete email message sent from Science editor Mr. Jeffrey Mervis to one of the whistleblowers who worked at a university in the east coast of the United States, according to Dr. Xiao[9], and the portions Fang made public on November 4, 2001, are marked in bold:

From: Jeffrey Mervis <jmervis@aaas.org>
To: ******@***.edu
Subject: re: Fang letter
Date: Tue 30 Oct 2001 14:10:09 -0500

Dear Dr. XX

The editor has asked me to reply to your concern about the article by Shimin Fang that appeared in Southern Weekend. We at Science have spend a good deal of time looking into the question of whether his article plagiarizes the manuscript that appeared in the 14 September issue of Science by Greene et al. Although I do not read or speak Chinese, I have had access to an English version of Fang's article, translated by an independent source.

We believe that Fang's article would not be considered acceptable journalism in the United States. He did not give the names of the researchers who carried out the research or the journal in which it was published, nor did he include quotes from other scientists. All these aspects would be essential for a journalistic article in a US publication.

However, a charge of plagiarism would be difficult to uphold since Fang did say the work was performed by researchers at Princeton University, and--unless the translation I have is wrong--he neither implied that the work was his own by witing in the first person nor directly copied the language in the Science paper.


As you point out, the issue is an important one. And we certainly appreciate queries like yours that require us to examine our practices.

I hope that this clarifies our view of the matter. Again, thank you for sharing your concerns with us.

Respectfully,

Jeffrey Mervis
Deputy news editor
Science magazine


The conclusion from Science didn’t conclude the case. On the contrary, it made the debate on Fang’s plagiarism get even more intense: the accusers, obviously disappointed with the conclusion, nonetheless picked up the sentence in the verdict, “Fang's article would not be considered acceptable journalism in the United States,” as a ruling against Fang; and Fang, of course greatly relieved, kept using the sentence “a charge of plagiarism would be difficult to uphold” to fend off the charge. For example, in December, 2001, right after the Science case, Fang accused academician Yang Xiongli of plagiarism, because in a Chinese review, Yang apparently translated some sentences from an English review, even though he listed that review as one of his references. Obviously, someone compared Yang’s case to Fang’s Science case, implying that if Yang’s article was a plagiarism, then Fang’s article should also be considered plagiarism. Fang responded by saying:

“Not to mention that the standards for academic papers and popular science articles are different, let’s base our argument upon the two reasons Science thought I didn’t plagiarize: ‘did say the work was performed by other people,’ Yang’s review didn’t mention his was based on other people’s review. (Just noting the source of other papers is useless); ‘nor directly copied other people’s language,’ 11/14 of Yang’s review was direct copying of other people’s.”[15]

3. Aftermath

However, Fang has been unable to shake off the ghost of Science case completely. In February, 2003, the case became a hot topic on the BBS of the University of Science and Technology of China, Fang’s alma mater, and Fang had to issue a statement[16]. One year later, another post about Science case appeared on the website of Peking University, and Fang issued another statement[17]. Thirteen months later, in March 2005, Dr. Liu Huajie, Fang’s ex-friend and an associate professor at PKU, published an article on PKU website, A Review of Fang Zhouzi’s Tactics of Transportation: The Double Standards of a Fraud Busting Hero[18]. Fang immediately published a retaliatory article[19]. In April, 2006, Dr. Liu’s article was published in an academic journal, Social Science Forum. Fang was much quieter this time, he waited 10 months to release his grudge, covertly[20].

In July, 2010, one month before the “Brawl in Beijing” incident, Dr. Liao Junlin of University of Iowa published an article on his blog, Ironclad Proof for Plagiarism: Fang Zhouzi Made a Scene on an International Stage, detailing Fang’s plagiarism in the Science case[21].

Of course, it was only after 2011 that Fang’s dirty secret became well-known in China. On March 30 of that year, Legal Weekly published a comprehensive investigation of Fang’s plagiarist history, and the Science case was one of the three cases reported[22]. Fang’s response? He told a newspaper: “All of them are old stories; I have already clarified the matters one by one long time ago.”[23]

An Investigation of Science’s Investigation

The questions are, why a plagiarism case so obvious and so convincing to most Chinese scholars was dismissed by the editors of a world-renowned science journal, Science magazine? Is it because that these Chinese scholars are Fang-haters who want to use this case to destroy the so called “China's Fraud Buster,” “China's Science Watchdog,” “Chinese Whistleblower,” and “John Maddox Prize winner,” the glorious titles bestowed upon Fang by Science and Nature[24]? Of course, Fang has answered the second question numerous times with a gigantic yes, and his answer might, or might not, have influenced the Science editors. However, whether Fang’s answer is credible or not, it is really irrelevant to this simple question: Did Fang plagiarize Greene’s paper? And to answer this simple question, we have to answer the first question: why did Science exonerate Fang in 2001?

My answer to the question is: because the Science editors had limited knowledge in bilingual plagiarism and copyright law, therefor the method they used to evaluate the case was fundamentally flawed. Please allow me to deliberate.

1. The Definition of Plagiarism

According to Compact Oxford English Dictionary, “plagiarism” “is taking the words or ideas of someone else and passing them off as one’s own.” According to Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, to “plagiarize” means “to use another person's idea or a part of their work and pretend that it is your own.” According to the definition provided by the National Copyright Administration of China, “plagiarize” is an act of taking other people’s works or part of other people’s work as his own:

“There are two forms of plagiarism, one is to completely or almost completely duplicate the works of others, and the other is to take other people’s copyrighted original components after alteration. In the field of copyright law enforcement, the former is called low level plagiarism, and the latter is called advanced plagiarism.”[25]

In his open letter to Fang in August, 2011, Dr. Robert Root-Bernstein of Michigan State University explained that there are at least three ways one could steal other people’s intellectual works:

“According to copyright law, a person may plagiarize another person’s work in several ways. The first is to copy their words without attribution. The second is to use more than a certain percentage of a work without explicit permission from the copyright holder. ……A third form of plagiarism consists of lifting another author’s arguments and examples without explicit permission. Accordingly, one may plagiarize a work even in the absence of copying its language and even with attribution, especially if the arguments and examples are unique and constitute a substantial portion of the work plagiarized.”[26]

It seemed that the Science editors checked only one of several ways of literary stealing, i. e., the low level plagiarism or directly copying the language, they completely neglected the problem of “advanced plagiarism,” and they made their conclusion based on this limited and simplified assessment. (To my knowledge, no one has accused Fang of pretending that he conducted the experiments, so Science’s another point, “he neither implied that the work was his own by witing in the first person,” is really pointless.)

The fact is, not only the Science editors ignored the commonly accepted definition of plagiarism, they also ignored their own copyright policy. According to Science magazine’s REPRINTS AND PERMISSIONS, permission is required “to reproduce content published in our journals and web publications in new works.” And to get such permission, a person has to “write a description of your project, including the title of your project, the number of copies to be made, the format (e.g., print copies, PowerPoint presentation, poster, media kit, etc.), targeted recipients, expected distribution date, and proposed selling price.”

Did the Science editors check whether Fang had the permission to reproduce Greene’s paper? Has Science magazine issued permission allowing Fang to use the image in Greene’s paper? Apparently not.

2. The Theory of Translation

According to Mr. Jia Hepeng, a Science contributor/report, and an ardent fan of Fang’s, who also organized, together with Fang’s buddy Fang Xuancang, the siege of Dr. Xiao Chuanguo in Chinese media in 2009[27], the way in which Science checked whether Fang directly copied Greene’s paper was like this:

“As for whether the article Fang wrote from Science in 2001 was a plagiarism, Science has made an investigation and Xiong Lei of Xinhua Agency was in the investigation team, so the decision was apparently not based on a wrong procedure -- first translating Fang's article into English and then compare it with the original English -- Xiong has good English and Chinese and knowledge of ethics, so she could have decided whether it was a plagiarism.”[28]

The strange thing is, neither Jia Hepeng, nor Xiong Lei, is willing to give a direct answer to a very simple question, asked by Dr. Xiao Chuanguo: Do you think Fang plagiarized the Science paper?[9]


The two Science contributors who dare not to answer a simple question: Do you think Fang plagiarized the Science paper?
Left: Ms. Xiong Lei, a senior editor of Xinhua News Agency and a contributor to Science, her 2001 report, “Biochemist Wages Online War Against Ethical Lapses” (Science 293:1039), introduced Fang to the international science communities;
Right: Mr. Jia Hepeng, the Chief Editor of Science News and a contributor to Science, Nature, and Nature Medicine, his 2006 report (with Hao Xin), “China's Fraud Buster Hit by Libel Judgments; Defenders Rally Round” (Science 314:1366-1367), brought Fang back to Science after more than 5 years’ lapse.


Although Ms. Xiong denied her involvement in the case, and Mr. Jia did apologize for his misinformation[9, 28], the approach Science used in the investigation was still the same: translating Fang’s article into English, and then comparing it with Greene’s paper. As I mentioned above, the method is fundamental flawed. Why?

Generally speaking, a translating process is very much similar to cooking: when you translate one language into another, you are baking flour to bread; and when you try to translate the translation back to the original language (reverse translation, or re-translation), you are trying to bring the bread back to flour, which, of course, is impossible. This analogy is particularly true when dealing with translation between English and Chinese: because the extreme dissimilarities in lexicons and grammars between the two languages, a reverse translation could almost never lead to the original wording. Let me give you an example.

The title of Greene’s paper, An fMRI Investigation of Emotional Engagement in Moral Judgment, is very simple, and it is even not a sentence. Lexically speaking, the title contains 6 notional words, and except for fMRI, all five others have multiple corresponding Chinese words, which may or may not have the same English translations as the original ones. So, in theory, the number of acceptable Chinese translations of the title is the product of the number of these words and the number of each word’s near synonyms. In addition, grammatically speaking, Chinese sentence structure is more flexible than English, and there are no tense and differentiation of singular and plural in Chinese, so you can imagine how complicated the situation could be[29]. The situation was concisely summarized by Dr. Robert Root-Bernstein in his open letter to Fang:

“Translations of words and ideas from one language to another pose a special problem in plagiarism cases, since differing grammars and cultural idioms will necessarily create alterations from the original text. Re-translations back into the original language cause further distortions.”[26]

Here are a few Chinese translations of the title of Greene’s paper, and anyone can ask a person who knows both English and Chinese well to translate it back to English, see how many people could restore them back to the original title, or you can just try Google Translate yourself:

在道德判断中情感投入的功能磁共振成像研究
感情在道德判断中的作用──功能磁共振成像方法研究
用功能磁共振成像方法研究感情在道德判断中的投入
感情在道德判断中的投入的功能磁共振成像研究


Because of the difficulties mentioned above, plus others, most Chinese people, Fang included, adopt the strategy of “sense-for-sense translation” (or “free translation,” “adaptive translation”), instead of “word-for-word translation” (or “literal translation,” “faithful translation”), and the former is, by definition, a process of “paraphrasing” or “re-wording.”[30] In other words, even though Fang did translate Greene’s paper directly, the process of his translation would still make the end product look indirect, and if that pseudo-indirect product is translated back, the indirectness doubles. And that’s exactly why Fang’s plagiarism looks so obvious and convincing to Chinese scholars, while some westerners remain skeptical. Of course Fang knew the existence of the confusion, so he declared:

“As long as I use my own language, my own wordings, my own way of writing to introduce [others works], the article is mine.”[31]

In other words, any English articles, papers, and books, could be Fang’s, after his translation.

So, how do we avoid the loophole in bilingual plagiarism cases? My solution is this: when evidence is compelling, such as there is overall similarity, the reverse translation has to be conducted in accordance with the following two principles: 1. as faithful as possible to the original (in this case, it’s Fang’s Chinese article); and 2. as close as possible to the target (in this case, it’s Greene’s English paper). In other words, if two sentences in the original and target, respectively, have similar or identical meanings, the translation should be conducted according to the target both in structure and wording.

Re-investigation on the Science Case

Now, let’s re-examine the Science case one more time, and try to give a simple answer to a simple question which was raised nearly 12 years ago: Did Fang Zhouzi plagiarize Greene’s paper?

To answer the question, I translated Fang’s article in its entirety, broke it up into sentences, and aligned each of them side by side with corresponding sentences in Greene’s paper, if there are. Of course, I adhered to the two principles I just listed when I did the reverse translation. The comparison result is shown in a table below, and my analysis is based mainly on that table.








1. Plagiarism of Structure

According to an in-class presentation in Centralia College, The Five Types of Plagiarism, “plagiarism of structure” is defined as “Paraphrasing another’s words by changing sentence construction or word choice with citation;” and/or “Paraphrasing while maintaining original sentence construction with acknowledging the source.”

According to Dominican University’s Writing Resources, “Plagiarism of structure is the use of another's logical order in an essay, steps of reasoning in a paragraph or section, or order of elements in a sentence.”

Fang acknowledges the existence of “plagiarism of structure.” In 2007, while being caught in yet another plagiarism scandal, Fang busted a young female write. In an article published in Legal Evening News, Fang wrote:

“Although popular works differ from academic works in not requiring giving detailed citations, the key is that you cannot copy other people’s structure and wordings in your articles, otherwise, even if you copy only a small piece, it is still plagiarism.”[32]

Fang’s “Solving Moral Dilemmas Scientifically?” contains 7 paragraphs, 37 sentences (a unit of words ends with a period or a question mark, excluding the question marks in parentheses). As shown in the table above, the sequence of these sentences is highly correlated with that in Greene’s paper, from beginning to end. In other words, Fang’s paragraphs and sentences are in the same order as those in Greene’s paper. The most astonishing results are revealed in the first 4 paragraphs: the 22 sentences are almost completely in the same sequence as the 24 sentences in the first 3 paragraphs in Greene’s paper: there is only one Fang’s sentence (#22, IV-6) which does not have a corresponding sentence in Greene’s paper, but it matches perfectly to one of Dr. Laura Helmuth’s sentences. If not counting sentence #22, the correlation coefficient of the sentence orders between Fang’s and Greene’s is 0.987, which is, of course, extremely significant. (With that sentence, the correlation coefficient falls to 0.773, but still extremely significant). (See figure below).


Structural similarity
The sentence order of 22 sentences in the first 4 paragraphs of Fang’s article is almost identical to that of 24 sentences in the first 3 paragraphs of Greene’s paper[33].


The first 4 paragraphs of Fang’s article contain 764 Chinese characters, more than 50% of the entire text, and Fang didn’t mention any reference, let alone Greene’s paper. So, how come they are so similar structurally?

2. Plagiarism of Content

In the first 2 paragraphs, Fang introduced “trolley dilemma” and “footbridge dilemma,” respectively, and they are very similar, or identical, to the first paragraph of Greene’s paper. According to Fang, the reason for the similarities was because they are “classical dilemmas which have been introduced and discussed by countless people, they are not new discoveries.”[34] That was just a plain lie.

The so called “trolley dilemma” was introduced by Professor Philippa Ruth Foot (1920-2010) in 1967 in her classic “The Problem of Abortion and the Doctrine of the Double Effect,” in which the word “trolley” was not even mentioned[35]. It was Dr. Judith Jarvis Thomson who coined the term “trolley problem” in 1976, but she didn’t use the term “trolley dilemma” at that time, nor in a paper published in 1985, which Greene cited in his paper[36]. Even right now, the “trolley dilemma” is still called “Trolley Problem” in Wikipedia. So, besides from Greene’s paper, from whose “introduction” or “discussion” did Fang get the term “trolley dilemma”?[37]

On the other hand, the so called “footbridge dilemma” was introduced by Dr. Judith Thomson in 1976, and she termed the problem “Fat Man” in 1985. To my knowledge, it was Greene et al. who changed the term to “footbridge dilemma.” So, if not copying from Greene’s paper, where did Fang get the term “footbridge dilemma”?

The fact is, Greene et al. had to read the entire 20-pages paper, The Trolley Problem, by Dr. Judith Thomson, to write their first paragraph, which contains merely 195 words, because, in The Trolley Problem, a dilemma equivalent to “Fat Man” or “footbridge” was initially a “surgeon dilemma,” in which a surgeon faces the choices of cutting open a healthy person and using his organs to save five other patients, or letting them die; and the “footbridge dilemma” was separated from “trolley dilemma” by 15 pages. It appears that it was Greene et al. who raised the status of the Fat Man to “footbridge dilemma” so it could stand side by side with “trolley dilemma,” and became a “classical dilemma.” As a matter of fact, the Fat Man dilemma does not need a footbridge at all: In Dr. Laura Helmuth’s article introducing Greene’s paper, a different version, but essentially the same dilemma, was created[3].


Two different versions of Fat Man dilemma appeared in the same issue of Science
Left: the “footbridge” version of Fat Man dilemma, verbally described in Greene’s paper (the image is from Dr. Greene’s website); Right: the standing-by version of Fat Man dilemma, depicted in Dr. Laura Helmuth’s article which was intended to introduce Greene’s paper.


In other words, if we let every philosopher, psychologist, and neuroscientist in the whole world turn Dr. Thomson’s The Trolley Problem into a 200-words summary independently, it would be really a surprise if any of them remotely resemble the first paragraph of Greene’s paper. Then, how come non-philosopher, non-psychologist, and non-neuroscientist Fang was so lucky?

The lucky thing continued to happen in Fang’s 3rd paragraph, in which Fang described a variant of trolley dilemma originally created by Dr. Judith Thomson, and she called it “the loop variant.” Greene et al. picked up this variant by citing Dr. Thomson to “illustrate the sort of dialectical difficulties that all proposed solutions to this problem have encountered.” Let’s take a look at how Greene et al. described the dilemma:

“……the track leading to the one person loops around to connect with the track leading to the five people (1). Here we will suppose that without a body on the alternate track, the trolley would, if turned that way, make its way to the other track and kill the five people as well. In this variant, as in the footbridge dilemma, you would use someone's body to stop the trolley from killing the five. Most agree, nevertheless, that it is still appropriate to turn the trolley in this case in spite of the fact that here, too, we have a case of ‘using.’”[2]

And here is how Fang described it:

“Then, let’s take a look at a variant of the trolley dilemma: suppose that the track with the one person standing is connected with the other track, forming a loop, if there is no this man on the track, the trolley would make its way to the other track and kill the five people. After killing the person, the trolley would stop and won’t hurt the other five people. Under such situation, whether you would lead the trolley to the track with one person to kill him? Although in this case, this person is used directly, most people would still think it is appropriate.” (III-4 to III-6)

The thing is, Dr. Judith Thomson didn’t say anything like “Most agree ……it is still appropriate” as Greene el al. said, or “most people would still think it is appropriate,” as Fang said. What she said, after describing the dilemma, was:

“May the agent turn the trolley? Some people feel more discomfort at the idea of turning the trolley in the loop variant than in the original Bystander at the Switch. But we cannot really suppose that the presence or absence of that extra bit of track makes a major moral difference as to what an agent may do in these cases, and it really does seem right to think (despite the discomfort) that the agent may proceed.”[36]

I don’t know based on what Greene et al said what they said, but I do know why Fang said what he said: because he copied Greene et al.

3. More Stealing

The fact is, Fang’s entire article was translated from Greene’s paper, directly. For example, in the 4th paragraph, Fang introduced Greene’s hypothesis in a general tone, “some psychologists believe…” (IV-4), and he introduced Greene et al. in the next paragraph as “psychologists at Princeton University in the United States” (V-1). By doing so, he created the impressions that 1. The hypothesis was some else’s; and 2. He wrote that sentence based on reading “countless” introductions and discussions.

Also, when writing his 5th paragraph, he didn’t bother to read the Supplemental Data of Greene’s paper, which has been available online since the publication of the paper, to see what kind of questions were used in their experiments. Instead, he just translated the example questions described in the paper (V-4). Also because of his laziness, Fang didn’t know that there were discrepancies between what described in the paper and what delineated in the supplemental data: according to Greene’s paper, “In each of two studies, Experiments 1 and 2, we used a battery of 60 practical dilemmas.” However, based on the supplemental data, there were a total of 64 dilemmas, and 53 of them were used in Experiment 1, and 61 in Experiment 2[38]. And Fang copied Greene et al.: “They asked the participants of the experiments to respond to 60 dilemmas,” “The 60 dilemmas are divided into 3 groups.”

Also, based on the context, Fang’s last paragraph looked like his own opinions, but in fact, many of these opinions were stolen from Greene’s paper, as well as from Laura Helmuth’s article.

The facts are, Fang is extremely ignorant in his own specialty, biochemistry (hence the nickname Dr. Lard), and Fang had no training in philosophy, in psychology, and in neuroscience. Therefore, the same question I asked Fang’s Ph. D. advisor, Dr. Z. Burton, 18 months ago, and I’m still waiting for his reply, is still applicable here:

“Dr. Fang has no training whatsoever in philosophy of science. And his ignorance in this area is so astonishing that whenever he tries to write his own sentences, he would have a high probability of getting something wrong. Then, the question is: without copying Dr. Root-Bernstein’s paper, how could Dr. Fang write his What Is Science?[39]

Fang’s ignorance in moral philosophy was demonstrated in October, 2007, six years after the publication of his Solving Moral Dilemmas Scientifically? when a person, web ID Rossonero, asked Fang: exactly which philosopher(s) believed that “moral judgment is pure rational,” since Fang asserted in the article “the experimental results is a blow to mainstream philosophers, they have been claiming that moral judgment is pure rational.”[40]

At first, Fang scolded Rossonero, and only after Rossonero pressed the question, Fang posted the following paragraph as his basis:

“The findings are bad news for the majority of moral philosophers and ethicists, who maintain that moral decisions must be based on pure reason, says philosopher Stephen Stich of Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. After all, he says, people in the scanner are ‘thinking of abstract, hypothetical problems, of the sort philosophers have been reflecting on for decades.’ Instead of discounting emotion, Stich says, his colleagues should treat it as an important part of people's moral reasoning.”[41]

Yes, based upon the above, which was copied directly from Dr. Laura Helmuth’s Moral Reasoning Relies on Emotion[3], Fang thought “mainstream philosophers believe that moral judgment IS pure rational.” Apparently, Fang still does not understand what many philosophers believe is moral judgment OUGHT to be based on pure rational, and it is psychologists’ job to find what IS the foundation of moral judgment. Till today, Fang hasn’t given a philosopher’s name who “believes that moral judgment is pure rational.” And that Rossonero was banned from the forum of the New Threads by Fang, since he kept asking Fang this question, “Fang, have you understood the difference between is and ought?”[42]

Besides literary theft, Fang also stole one image from Greene’s paper in 2001, and two more images from somewhere else in 2007. The funny thing is, these images were not “used for the purpose of introducing other people’s research results,” as Fang claimed in 2011[43], since their contents were either unrelated to the article, or were not explained at all[44]. The fact is, even Dr. Greene himself had to acknowledge the copyright of AAAS when he used his own figure in another publication[45], for non-profit purpose, but Fang, for the sole purpose of gaining his fame and income, felt no guilty at all to use them without permission or attribution.

Conclusions

Based on the above comparison and analysis, the only reasonable conclusion is that there is no way Fang could have written any paragraph in his Solving Moral Dilemmas Scientifically without copying Greene’s paper. Fang’s article contains 7 paragraphs, 37 sentences, and 1,525 Chinese characters (excluding punctuation marks). All of the paragraphs (100%) were plagiarism, 33 sentences (89%) were obtained by directly translating or “paraphrasing” two of Science papers, and only 127 characters (8.3%) in the four sentences without their counterparts in the Science papers were supposedly his own. In addition, Fang stole one image when he published his article in 2001, and one more image and one artwork when he republished his article in 2007. At least two of these items were protected by copyright law.

If this kind of stealing is not plagiarism, then what is plagiarism?

Retrospectively, had the Science editors done a better job, many Chinese people would have escaped the harm from Fang’s erroneous and even poisonous “science popularization,” many Chinese scholars would have avoided Fang’s persecution and defamation, and Dr. Xiao, one of the whistleblowers, might not have gone to jail nine years late. It is pitiful that so many Chinese scholars placed their hope of justice in the hands of Science, and it is disappointing that Science failed to live up to their expectation. It is even shameful that Science didn’t, in the event of “Brawl in Beijing,” have the courage and dignity to stand up to tell the truth to the whole world about the cause and the nature of the feud between Fang and Xiao. Instead, Science published several biased reports on the incident[24]. Now, it seems Science has got another chance to correct their wrong by re-opening the case and convicting Fang of plagiarism and copyright infringement. Failure to do so could mean the loss of the opportunity for redemption, forever. So, to help Science in doing the right thing, I’m presenting my allegations against Fang below:

1. Fang plagiarized the structure of Greene’s paper in 2001and 2007;

2. Fang plagiarized the ideas, opinions, arguments, and examples in Greene’s paper in 2001 and 2007;

3. Fang plagiarized the ideas, opinions, and wordings in Laura Helmuth’s article in 2001 and 2007;

4. Fang infringed the copyright of Science/AAAS by reproducing the text of Greene’s paper without permission in 2001 and 2007;

5. Fang infringed the copyright of Science/AAAS by using an image in Greene’s paper without permission in 2001 and 2007;

6. Fang infringed the copyrights of Ann L. Myers and Memory Loss and the Brain website by using an artwork in his book without permission in 2007.





被编辑3次。最后被亦明编辑于08/05/2013 07:18AM。
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打开 | 下载 - Shamelessness shouldn\'t be anyone\'s Nature XVI.pdf (1.51 MB)
主题 发布者 已发表

Shamelessness Shouldn’t Be Anyone’s Nature ──An Open Letter to Nature (Part I) (6552 查看) 附件

亦明 November 09, 2012 08:46AM

Part II: Shameless “standing-up” (3951 查看) 附件

亦明 November 09, 2012 12:05PM

Part III: Shameless make-up (4369 查看) 附件

亦明 November 11, 2012 10:06PM

Part IV: Fact distortion and mess-up (3518 查看) 附件

亦明 November 13, 2012 11:57PM

Part V: Shameless, fraudulent, and malicious fighter (5094 查看) 附件

亦明 November 18, 2012 12:10PM

Part VI: A fake scientist’s fight against science (4174 查看) 附件

亦明 November 23, 2012 06:28AM

Part VII: A fraudulent fighter’s fight for fraud (4002 查看) 附件

亦明 November 28, 2012 09:46AM

Part VIII: A fighting dog for commercial and political forces (3485 查看) 附件

亦明 December 03, 2012 05:21PM

Part IX: An evil villain's fight for his career (3956 查看) 附件

亦明 December 09, 2012 05:36PM

Part X: A congenital liar has Nature as his amplifier (3466 查看) 附件

亦明 December 16, 2012 11:51AM

Part XI: Fang’s Law (4825 查看) 附件

亦明 January 29, 2013 12:16AM

Part XII: Fang’s Law-II (4700 查看) 附件

亦明 February 04, 2013 10:40AM

Part XIII: A Thief Couple (4558 查看) 附件

亦明 February 10, 2013 06:14PM

Part XIV: A 24K Pure Evil (4544 查看) 附件

亦明 February 17, 2013 07:28PM

Part XV: An Unprecedented Professional Literary Thief (4623 查看) 附件

亦明 February 24, 2013 08:00PM

Part XVI: The Science Case (2717 查看) 附件

亦明 March 03, 2013 07:31PM

Part XVII: The Nature-Science Case (3196 查看) 附件

亦明 March 10, 2013 06:41PM

Part XVIII: The Harvard Case (I) (3194 查看) 附件

亦明 March 17, 2013 06:36PM

Part XIX: The Harvard Case (II) (4344 查看) 附件

亦明 March 24, 2013 02:40PM

Part XX: The Longevity Case (6934 查看) 附件

亦明 March 31, 2013 03:55PM

Part XXI: The Naked Mole-Rat Case (10793 查看) 附件

亦明 April 07, 2013 06:05PM



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