Jeffrey Beall’s List of Predatory, Open-Access Publishers, 2012 Edition

19 12 2011

Perhaps you remember that I previously wrote [1] about  non-existing and/or low quality scammy open access journals. I specifically wrote about Medical Science Journals of  the http://www.sciencejournals.cc/ series, which comprises 45 titles, none of which having published any article yet.

Another blogger, David M [2] also had negative experiences with fake peer review invitations from sciencejournals. He even noticed plagiarism.

Later I occasionally found other posts about open access spam, like the post of Per Ola Kristensson [3] (specifically about Bentham, Hindawi and InTech OA publishers), of Peter Murray-Rust [4] ,a chemist interested in OA (about spam journals and conferences, specifically about Scientific Research Publishing) and of Alan Dove PhD [5] (specifically about The Journal of Computational Biology and Bioinformatics Research (JCBBR) published by Academic Journals).

But now it appears that there is an entire list of “Predatory, Open-Access Publishers”. This list was created by Jeffrey Beall, academic librarian at the University of Colorado Denver. He just updated the list for 2012 here (PDF-format).

According to Jeffrey predatory, open-access publishers

are those that unprofessionally exploit the author-pays model of open-access publishing (Gold OA) for their own profit. Typically, these publishers spam professional email lists, broadly soliciting article submissions for the clear purpose of gaining additional income. Operating essentially as vanity presses, these publishers typically have a low article acceptance threshold, with a false-front or non-existent peer review process. Unlike professional publishing operations, whether subscription-based or ethically-sound open access, these predatory publishers add little value to scholarship, pay little attention to digital preservation, and operate using fly-by-night, unsustainable business models.

Jeffrey recommends not to do business with the following (illegitimate) publishers, including submitting article manuscripts, serving on editorial boards, buying advertising, etc. According to Jeffrey, “there are numerous traditional, legitimate journals that will publish your quality work for free, including many legitimate, open-access publishers”.

(For sake of conciseness, I only describe the main characteristics, not always using the same wording; please see the entire list for the full descriptions.)

Watchlist: Publishers, that may show some characteristics of  predatory, open-access publisher
  • Hindawi Way too many journals than can be properly handled by one publisher
  • MedKnow Publications vague business model. It charges for the PDF version
  • PAGEPress many dead links, a prominent link to PayPal
  • Versita Open paid subscription for print form. ..unclear business model

An asterisk (*) indicates that the publisher is appearing on this list for the first time.

How complete and reliable is this list?

Clearly, this list is quite exhaustive. Jeffrey did a great job listing  many dodgy OA journals. We should watch (many) of these OA publishers with caution. Another good thing is that the list is updated annually.

(http://www.sciencejournals.cc/ described in my previous post is not (yet) on the list ;)  but I will inform Jeffrey).

Personally, I would have preferred a distinction between real bogus or spammy journals and journals that seem to have “too many journals to properly handle” or that ask (too much ) money for subscription/from the author. The scientific content may still be good (enough).

Furthermore, I would rather see a neutral description of what is exactly wrong about a journal. Especially because “Beall’s list” is a list and not a blog post (or is it?). Sometimes the description doesn’t convince me that the journal is really bogus or predatory.

Examples of subjective portrayals:

  • Dove Press:  This New Zealand-based medical publisher boasts high-quality appearing journals and articles, yet it demands a very high author fee for publishing articles. Its fleet of journals is large, bringing into question how it can properly fulfill its promise to quickly deliver an acceptance decision on submitted articles.
  • Libertas Academia “The tag line under the name on this publisher’s page is “Freedom to research.” It might better say “Freedom to be ripped off.” 
  • Hindawi  .. This publisher has way too many journals than can be properly handled by one publisher, I think (…)

I do like funny posts, but only if it is clear that the post is intended to be funny. Like the one by Alan Dove PhD about JCBBR.

JCBBR is dedicated to increasing the depth of research across all areas of this subject.

Translation: we’re launching a new journal for research that can’t get published anyplace else.

The journal welcomes the submission of manuscripts that meet the general criteria of significance and scientific excellence in this subject area.

We’ll take pretty much any crap you excrete.

Hattip: Catherine Arnott Smith, PhD at the MedLib-L list.

  1. I Got the Wrong Request from the Wrong Journal to Review the Wrong Piece. The Wrong kind of Open Access Apparently, Something Wrong with this Inherently… (laikaspoetnik.wordpress.com)
  2. A peer-review phishing scam (blog.pita.si)
  3. Academic Spam and Open Access Publishing (blog.pokristensson.com)
  4. What’s wrong with Scholarly Publishing? New Journal Spam and “Open Access” (blogs.ch.cam.ac.uk)
  5. From the Inbox: Journal Spam (alandove.com)
  6. Beall’s List of Predatory, Open-Access Publishers. 2012 Edition (http://metadata.posterous.com)
  7. Silly Sunday #42 Open Access Week around the Globe (laikaspoetnik.wordpress.com)

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15 responses

23 12 2011
Beall’s List: de uitwassen van Open Access « I&M 2.0

[…] Er zijn wel enige kanttekeningen te plaatsen bij de lijst – hij is zeker nog niet compleet (in de commentaren worden al een aantal nieuwe ‘kandidaten’ aangedragen ;-) ), en de gebruikte criteria hadden wat helderder en hier en daar wat objectiever kunnen zijn. Laika Spoetnik (AMC) schrijft hier ook over op haar blog. […]

1 01 2012
Bibliotheken en het Digitale Leven in December 2011 | Dee'tjes

[…] over  Jeffrey Beall’s List of Predatory, Open-Access Publishers, 2012 Edition Maar ik vind het toch wel handig iets te hebben als ernaar gevraagd wordt  (De lijst) … Zie […]

3 02 2012
Pranab

I have been corresponding with Jeffrey about this and I must say he is a fantastic person who is really on the edge of this rapidly growing field. We need sentinel surveillance by professionals like you and him so that people like me do not end up getting duped!

However, I must say every time I see an article or a blog post or a discussion thread about predatory OA it hurs and angers me at the same time. :(

13 04 2012
Predatory Open Access Publisher OMICS Publishing Group: Now Blog Spamming « Doug's Archaeology

[…] of predatory journals, which appears to be down at the moment but here is a link to a copy of the list of predatory open access journals, with discussion on the different types of […]

21 05 2012
11 09 2012
Een zelftest voor CVS/ME? — Life With ME/CFS

[…] voor dit tijdschrift in een poging om het naar waarde te schatten, maar gelukkig voor mij, hadden Laika, Alan Dove en Jeffrey Beall dergelijke tijdschriften en hun uitgevers al eens besproken. Dit worden […]

11 09 2012
A self-test for CFS/ME? — Life With ME/CFS

[…] oil-spills and scams. I was unable to find an impact factor for this journal, but lucky for me, Laika, Alan Dove and Jeffrey Beall had already written about journals like this one and their publishers. […]

27 09 2012
António Martins

Swiss Journals, http://www.swissjournals.org/, can be a new addition to the list. More information in http://scholarlyoa.com/2012/08/28/swiss-journals/#more-607.

24 10 2012
Dr. Anupama Sharma

Dear All
A third Class person named as Jeffrey Beall doing an illegal business with the Indian Publishers. His main target is Indian publishers. I noticed his blog and he has given a full length paper introduction about him but fails to specify the reason to say “fake journal” for single journal listed in his blog, I request all the Indian publishers to take the legal action against him and I also request to put a case about this illegal business by Jeffrey Beall in Indian and American Courts

26 10 2012
Bill Cohen

Could this also be expanded to sue reviewers who give negative reviews of books from India? Expand upon the logic of suing those who criticize or else explain why suggestions like this are not themselves example of illegal harrasment.

24 10 2012
Bill Cohen

Dr. Anupama Sharma, There are also numerous other blogs, lists, and reports critical of many products, many of which are imported from India. Can you not call upon India companies to sue all of them? Also, sue any critical reports issued in other countries around the world that you deem possible..

26 10 2012
laikaspoetnik

I would say Pakistan beats all, Nigeria is second on the list. ;)
But a more interesting question would be why these scam journals (most are obviously scam) choose certain countries to operate from. I know the reasons. Do you?

26 10 2012
Bill Cohen

Lalkaspoetnik, no I never could figure this out….why certain countries (Pakistan, India and Nigeria)? Speaking of India, and the alleged existence of righteous indignation and “class action” lawsuit, see the two reports below from India source on disreputable OA scam journals from that noble country.
Best,

http://spicyipindia.blogspot.com/2012/10/internet-fraud-bogus-open-access.html

http://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/technology/on-the-net-a-scam-of-a-most-scholarly-kind/article3939161.ece?homepage=true

18 03 2014
3 09 2014
Sandra

How can I tell if a journal is dodgy before I submit anything? My PhD supervisor seems to pass on recommendations for journals in which he thinks I might be able to publish, but without checking them out first.

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