I read with interest Melinda Baldwin’s article on Ernest Rutherford’s publication strategies in relation to the journal Nature (Physics Today, May 2021, page 26). She provides an excellent description of how, being in close competition with Pierre Curie and Marie Curie in France, Rutherford was conscious that working in Montreal put him—as he wrote in a letter to Otto Hahn on 6 January 1907—“on the periphery of the circle” and made it difficult to publish rapidly in Europe.

But there is more to the story. The discoveries of Rutherford and his colleague John McLennan, who was then also working on radioactivity at the University of Toronto, may have had a part in the creation of a means of rapid publication for the Royal Society of Canada (RSC).

Rutherford was elected a member of the RSC in 1900, and at the June 1904 meeting he was elected president...

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