Horror: Address recycled

Address recycled

foto van e-mail-knop op toetsenbord

Tell us your horror story, what happened?

A newly starting researcher at a university not for away received all he needed to start his career, a laptop an e-mail address and the directions to the nearest coffee machine. He started his research and soon this led to a first publication! Excited about this first paper at his new workplace he decided to check if Google Scholar was already aware of his new publication. However, not only had Google already found his publication, it already had several publications listed for his ‘new’ e-mail address… The university had recycled the e-mail address and the previous owner had already published using this address! To fix this a new address was needed, but fixing the incorrect citations on Google Scholar is not easy… Apart from the mixed up publications, the new researcher now could take over all the accounts the previous researcher had created using this address using the ‘Forgot password’ option…

How long ago was it?

Less than a year ago

How was this solved?

Partly by creating a new mail address

How could this horror be avoided?

Do not recycle mail addresses!


Did you experience data horrors in your research life? Do you think that researchers could learn from your experience? Would you like to share your story with others?

We would love to help you in turning a creepy story around data into a positive lesson learned. Use this form below to share your story with the Dutch Data Horror Team.

Horror form


Pompoen als hoofd van een donkere figuur

Are you ready for it?

Archiving panic? No backups? Bugs in your code? Licence confusion? Who ya gonna call? Just the thought of it!

And yet it happens every day.

During this Data Horror Week, researchers will share these horror stories, based on their own experience. To prevent you from making the same mistake!