Open Access: Predatory Publishers

Beware of predatory publishers, which are taking advantage of the expanding OA market. The scholarship of these journals is not reliable. They aggressively solicit new articles which they publish, for a price. There is minimal to no peer-review of published articles, despite their claims.

"These are primarily online journals which have little or no academic legitimacy. They exist solely to make money for their owners, and they make that money by charging excessive “article processing fees”. ... Predatory journals regularly send out spam emails soliciting manuscripts."

From the blog, All About Work, :"Predatory Journals: An Experiment", by Fiona McQuarrie.

The number of predatory publishers has increased with the growth of OA.

To ensure that you avoid these:

  • check the list of possible predatory publishers, and the criteria used to identify them, or
  • select your journal from DOAJ, an online directory that indexes and provides access to quality open access, peer-reviewed journals.

Beall's List of Predatory Publishers

Jeffrey Beall is an academic librarian at Auraria Library, University of Colorado Denver, who has published in the areas of metadata, full-text searching, and information retrieval. He maintained a blog on "Scholarly Open Access", where he posted his list of current predatory publishers and journals.  It was a preferred source to check before submitting your manuscript to a journal.

In January 2017, the list was taken down and has not been reposted.  There was some discussion among librarians about what happened to the list, and some sites have re-published the last iteration of it. Below are some links that might be helpful.

Beall's List of Predatory Journals
Nature: Predatory Journals Recruit Fake Editor
Publons: Beall's List Gone But Not Lost


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