To the Editor: Dr. Hirschmann's “Sounding Board” discussion of “Medical References” in the August 3 issue of the Journal was most enjoyable. An additional type comes to mind: VI. Referential Familiarity This procedure demonstrates the name-dropping ability of the author who uses the reference, “personal communication.” Frequent use of this ploy allows the author to state that he is conferring with leaders in his field. When combined with Type IA, Referential Incest, it just means that he talks to himself. No extract is available for articles shorter than 400 words.
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