Massaging the impact factor

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Case text (Anonymised)

The editor in chief of a journal started insisting that authors include references from the journal in their articles. S/he provided examples of acceptance letters from several other journals in the field, which insist that their authors do this, as evidence that it is standard and acceptable practice. The authors do not agree and think this is an unethical attempt to massage the impact factor. But they are struggling to convince the editor-in-chief.

  • If you agree we should not include the journal references, how do we convince an editor-in-chief who sees his competitors doing it?