A journal operated double blind peer-review, so the reviewers do not know the identity of the authors, and vice versa. However, the anonymity of the authors is not guaranteed, as the reviewers may discover the identity of the authors (because of the area of research, references, writing style, etc). But rarely can the authors identify the reviewers.
The journal received a request from a reviewer to share a post on twitter, which may disclose the reviewer’s identity to the authors.
Question(s) for the COPE Forum
- Does the double-blind peer-review process apply after publication?
- What should be the position of a journal when reviewers ask to share their report or experience on social media?
The journal’s course of action in this case needs to be guided by the objective. The point of double blind peer review is to reduce bias during the review process. While of course anonymity of the authors ends upon publication of the work, anonymity of the reviewers’ identity in a double blind peer review process typically continues after publication because of the contract that the journal has made with its reviewers. As the right of confidentiality lies with the reviewer, if the reviewer wants to reveal the information, then it is reasonable to consider granting that request. However, many journals require permission from the author after their paper is published if the reviewer is going to disclose information, and this is considered to be a good practice to follow.
The journal granted the reviewer permission to post their peer review experience on Twitter, but it seems the reviewer did not do so. The journal considers the case closed.