To Catch a Predator: How to Recognize Predatory Journals and Conferences

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A presentation on predatory publishing, in the Information Interventions series, sponsored by the LACUNY Scholarly Communications Roundtable , the CUNY Office of Library Services, and Just Publics @ 365.

It is critical to understand the history and background of predatory publishing, a fairly recent phenomenon, whether you are an author or a librarian called upon to assess a publisher. This talk addresses the politics of Gold Open Access, the Bohannon "sting," and the issue of "third world-ism." Red herrings of predatory publishers are an especially useful aspect of this presentation.

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To Catch a Predator: How to Recognize Predatory Journals and Conferences

  1. 1. To Catch a Predator: How to Recognize Predatory Journals and Conferences MONICA BERGER A S S O C I AT E P R O F E S S O R , L I B R A RY NEW YORK CITY COLLEGE OF TECHNOLOGY N O V. 1 5 , 2 0 1 3 Sponsored by the LACUNY Scholarly Communications Roundtable , the CUNY Office of Library Services, and Just Publics @ 365
  2. 2. “Unfortunately, there is no objective way to measure or determine whether a publisher is predatory” --Jeffrey Beall Beall, Jeffrey. "Unethical Practices in Scholarly, Open-Access Publishing."Journal of Information Ethics 22.1 (2013): 11-20.
  3. 3. HOW DO LIBRARIANS FIT IN?
  4. 4. Part 1: Background, definitions, what is new is old (sort of), Beall and Bohannon
  5. 5. Beall’s Definition INTENT TO DECEIVE
  6. 6. What is new is old
  7. 7. More about Beall •NY Times article •Lawsuits
  8. 8. http://scholarlyoa.com
  9. 9. APCs
  10. 10. Part II • Common practices of predatory publishers • Examples of other kinds of predatory and/or low quality scholarship
  11. 11. Bad things happen to good scholars 1. “Articles published without complete author approval. 2. Articles published before payment terms were either understood or completed. 3. Articles published with payment terms incomplete but then negotiated, forcing authors into an uncomfortable position. 4. An editorial process that created more problems than it solved, with errors introduced during proof-reading, and authors “tearing their hair out” because of it. 5. Papers published without peer-review.” (Kent Anderson, Scholarly Kitchen)
  12. 12. OF PAPER MILLS AND PLAGIARISM
  13. 13. Part III HOW TO CATCH A PREDATOR
  14. 14. Identify … Predators [Beall] and trustworthy publishers …
  15. 15. Trustworthy publishers • OASPA http://oaspa.org/ • COPE http://publicationethics.org • SPARC Europe Seal for OA http://sparceurope.org/ourwork/sparc-europe-seal-for-openaccess-journals/ • SPARC http://sparc.arl.org/
  16. 16. TRUST NOT … ALWAYS VERIFY • Business model? All APCs? • Crosscheck editors, identify of journal/publisher • Read articles & judge!
  17. 17. • Rapid publication promise • Publisher=editor of the journals; editorial boards multiple • No editor, board, staff and/or affiliations • Phishing, spammy contact=bulk email • Contradictions about editorial process, rights or fees on the publisher’s site • Disconnected web contact forms • No .edu email for contact • Poorly written text, dead links, hasty creation • Zero interest in reader experience • Publisher very new • Lack of transparency about publisher
  18. 18. • Lack of transparency about fees • Too little, too much articles [three bears] • Lack of coherence in content scope/Vagueness of scope: o • • • • • • • • • • • “Galaxy: International Multidisciplinary Research Journal,” “British Journal of Science” Copycat name No CC license Peer-review not explained clearly or in detail No revisions post-submission Not in DOAJ (but inclusion not meaningful conversely) Falsely claims indexing and abstracting in library databases Touts logos of well known indexing and abstracting library databases Links / logos of established organizations, publishers and such when there’s no actual connection Calls itself “American Journal of … “ when no base in the United States, etc. Copy look and feel of well-known publishers’ website Weird metrics
  19. 19. SOLUTIONS? • • Authors fight back in print DOAJ rising standards—114 journals removed! “Bohannon's article did highlight three important issues: There are predatory publishers. There are problems with peer review. Some of the exposed journals are indexed in DOAJ.” • • Open peer review? Library Loon spurs a conversation. See Barbara Fister’s great summary: http://www.insidehighered.com/blogs/library-babelfish/judging-journals
  20. 20. Sources referenced in order of talk Slides 2, 5: Beall, Jeffrey. "Unethical Practices in Scholarly, Open-Access Publishing."Journal of Information Ethics 22.1 (2013): 11-20. Slide 8: Crawford, Walt. Open Access: What You Need to Know Now. ALA Editions(2011). Slide 9: Butler, D. "The Dark Side of Publishing." Nature 495.7442 (2013): 433-435. ; NY Times article on Beall: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/08/health/for-scientistsan-exploding-world-of-pseudo-academia.html?smid=twnytimesscience&seid=auto&_r=0&pagewanted=all. Slides 11-13: Beall’s website http://scholarlyoa.com ; Nature article: http://www.nature.com/news/specials/scipublishing/index.html Slide 14: Dudley, Michael Quinn. "The Curious Case of Academic Publishing.“ Partnership: the Canadian Journal of Library and Information Practice and Research 8.1 (2013).
  21. 21. Slide 15: Bohannon, John. "Who's Afraid of Peer Review?" Science 342.6154 (2013): 60-5. ; Scholarly Kitchen: http://scholarlykitchen.sspnet.org/2013/10/04/open-access-stingreveals-deception-missed-opportunities/ and http://scholarlykitchen.sspnet.org/2013/11/12/post-open-access-sting-an-interview-withjohn-bohannon/ ; Butler (op. cit.) Slide 16: Beall, Jeffrey. "Five Scholarly Open Access Publishers." The Charleston Advisor 13.4 (2012): 5-10. ; Kozak, Marcin, and James Hartley. "Publication Fees for Open Access Journals: Different Disciplines? Different Methods."Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology 64.12 (2013): 2591-4. ; Morrison, Heather. "Economics of scholarly communication in transition." First Monday, 18.6 (2013). Slide 18: Anderson, Kent. "“Predatory” Open Access Publishers — The Natural Extreme of an Author-Pays Model | The Scholarly Kitchen " http://scholarlykitchen.sspnet.org/2012/03/06/predatory-open-access-publishers-thenatural-extreme-of-an-author-pays-model/ Slide 19: http://www.nature.com/news/sham-journals-scam-authors-1.12681 Slide 20: Jansen, Patrick A., and Pierre-Michel Forget. "Predatory Publishers and Plagiarism Prevention." Science 336.6087 (2012): 1380.
  22. 22. Slide 21: description of a predatory conference: http://scholarlyoa.com/2013/09/12/conference-attendee-to-omics-i-want-out/ Slide 25: New DOAJ standards: http://www.doaj.org/doaj?func=news&nId=303 Slide 26: Library Loon, http://gavialib.com/2012/04/assessing-the-scamminess-of-apurported-open-access-publisher/; Are ‘predatory’ publishers an American export? http://www.semantico.com/2013/05/are-predatory-publishers-an-american-export/ Sllde 29: da Silva, Jaime A. Teixeira, and Judit Dobránszki. "How Not to Publish an Open Access Journal: A Case Study.“; DOAJ on the sting: http://www.doaj.org/doaj?func=news&nId=317&uiLanguage=en Fister’s summary of Library Loon discussion: http://www.insidehighered.com/blogs/librarybabel-fish/judging-journals
  23. 23. Thank you! Monica Berger mberger@citytech.cuny.edu

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