“In spite of this, prohibiting citation to preprints forces authors to choose between using information that informed their work without attributing the source (which is potentially plagiarism) or having to withhold relevant information from their manuscript (which is at odds with transparency and full reporting). This does a disservice to the authors of the work under review, the authors of the original preprint, and science as a whole. In an environment in which researchers can’t cite preprints, fears of being scooped will escalate, chilling researchers’ willingness to share early and openly. A reduction in preprinting driven by regressive citation policies would not only slow down the pace of discovery, but decrease scientific rigor: without preprints, errors are less likely to be discovered. Thus, prohibiting preprint citation may, counterproductively, decrease the reliability of the published literature.
Rather than prohibit citation of the latest papers, we propose some alternative strategies. …”