I’ll not give an example today (but I may in the future, if I get the feeling that malice is involved), but there have been cases where my research gets ignored by researchers with whom I have extensively discussed it – i.e., they approached me at SVP or other opportunities to talk about it.
This pisses me off, and this has now led to a Black List I am keeping. I won’t review papers or grant applications by them (as I fear I would not be impartial), and I certainly won’t go out of my way to cite their publications. In fact, I will actively look for alternatives to cite, if needs be.
Because citations are our currency and our credentials in science. It doesn’t matter how good someone’s work is, it doesn’t matter how highly regarded she or he is. If your papers don’t get cited, you’re going down the drain. Funding agencies and hiring committees count them. There’s various services that do the counting, and although some do it very badly indeed, many people who will make important decisions about my future as a palaeontologist look at these services’ record of my publications.
And this is true of all researchers, which is why I try to make sure I cite the relevant papers of people who help me. No, I won’t add gratuitous citations just to bolster someone’s index. But if something is highly relevant, I’ll cite it, and if I have a choice of what to use as an example, I’ll pick the example by the person who helped me.
The past three weeks have seen two papers published where one of my papers should really have been cited each. Also, there is a paper in review somewhere (no, I won’t say if I am one of the reviewers) that has findings exactly parallel to those of one of my papers, just for a different taxon – and my work is not cited. Three strikes in as many weeks – I am most definitely not amused.
So, if you chat me up at SVP, pick my brain about a topic, then turn around and publish a paper citing dozens of papers, but ignore the one you talked to me about, be prepared to have just made my shit list.