“This is a paper submitted to a journal, with a copy sent to the other side of the debate, and an answering paper. Otherwise it is a paper answered in another journal by another paper. Anonymity is, of course, not allowed, full name and address and affiliation required. Nothing else counts as professional debate.”
Crackpot papers are not sent to real journals, because the papers in question do not meet basic scientific standards. They are instead sent to journals founded by other crackpots, or by the author himself. The co-authors are also crackpots. The references are to previous pseudoscientific work by the author or his friends, or to well-known scams. Peer-review consists of a nod from other crackpots. The ‘affiliations’ are usually private addresses, ‘research institutes’ which are typically the author’s home, or companies where the author and his dog are the only directors or – occasionally – addresses where the author is not known at all. The academic background of the author is either non-existent, in an unrelated discipline or bogus (degree mills are a routinely-used resource). In case of dissent, voiced in a real journal, the crackpot paraphrases his original incorrect reasoning, publishes it in a loony magazine, and claims to have routed his critics. The pseudoscientist does not believe in debate, because he is allergic to free speech and will often resort to legal threats in order to intimidate legitimate critics.