Normally the Editor (Mariya Lyubenova) solicits contributions to The Messenger. Unsolicited manuscripts are also welcome, but are subject to approval by the Editor before they can be published. All Messenger articles must have some connection to ESO. Submitted manuscripts are checked for obvious errors as far as possible. The Messenger articles are normally not refereed, although the Editor may in some cases solicit the advice of other ESO astronomers before finally accepting an article.
If you have received an invitation to submit an article to The Messenger, the editorial assistant will provide you with a MS Word template to help you prepare your article, as well as further instructions regarding the submission.
The Messenger and all articles are published open access under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Authors that have used Large Language Models tools (e.g. GPT, BERT, etc.) should document this in the acknowledgements section of their articles. Furthermore, LLMs should not be listed as co-authors as attribution of authorship carries with it accountability for the work, which cannot be effectively applied to LLMs.
Submitted manuscripts are checked for obvious errors as far as possible, including language. Nevertheless, authors are encouraged to have colleagues go over manuscripts for advice on language, style and content before submission. Messenger articles are normally not refereed, although the Editor may in some cases solicit the advice of other ESO astronomers before finally accepting an article.
Authors will receive proofs of their articles as PDF files shortly before publication. These should be examined carefully, and any corrections (not revisions) should be sent back to the Editor as quickly as possible. On some occasions an article may have to be delayed to the next issue. The authors will be informed of this immediately, and will have the opportunity to revise the article, if so desired.
Because of the very broad readership, articles in The Messenger must be of wide general interest and reader-friendly - more like magazine articles than formal reviews in professional scientific/technical journals, hence not too narrow, detailed or technical. The beginning of an article must introduce the broad subject and its background to the general reader. Overall, the style should be readable while informative.
Articles, including figures, tables, etc. should not normally exceed four Messenger pages in total (see below for conversion factors). Of course, shorter contributions, down to a figure with an appropriate caption, are certainly welcome. An article should contain no more that 10 references, and no more than 6 figures. Equations should be avoided or kept to an absolute minimum.
Articles of this size should be able to convey the essence, relevance and most important aspects of the subject to the average reader. Longer articles containing many details, figures and references (typical of professional reviews) are normally not appropriate for The Messenger.
Specific style points: