Human Experimentation By Faceshitte Without Institutional Review Board Approval

Any IRB experts care to weigh in on whether it is acceptable that PNAS published this paper describing Faceshitte’s psychological experiments on its users without any IRB review (at least that was referred to in the paper)?

Here is PNAS’s policy on human experimentation:

(vii) Research involving Human and Animal Participants and Clinical Trials must have been approved by the author’s institutional review board. Authors must follow the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors’ policy and deposit trial information and design into an accepted clinical trial registry before the onset of patient enrollment. Authors must include in the Methods section a brief statement identifying the institutional and/or licensing committee approving the experiments. For experiments involving human participants, authors must also include a statement confirming that informed consent was obtained from all participants. All experiments must have been conducted according to the principles expressed in the Declaration of Helsinki.

Looks pretty unambiguous that PNAS did not follow its own policies, and should retract this paper, right?


  1. =8)-DX says

    I thought they had review… and PeeZee points to the specifici exceptions to the guidelines that allowed them to do this…

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