The perils of preprints | The BMJ

“Preprints—manuscripts that have not undergone peer review—were first embraced in physics, catalysed by the creation in the early 1990s of arXiv.org, an open online repository for scholarly papers.1 It was not until 2013 that similar initiatives were embraced by the biological and then medical sciences,2 and novel publishing platforms continue to emerge. Some commentators believe the potential for harm is outweighed by the benefits,134 but others have raised specific concerns regarding medical preprints and mitigating the risk of harm to the public.2 These discussions need to be revisited in the context of the covid-19 pandemic, which has been accompanied by an explosion of preprint publications….”