Prompted by the launch last week of the Think. Check. Submit. campaign, I’ve been doing some reading on predatory publishing. Some readings I would recommend to anyone else looking into the subject, with a summary and some comments are below.
- Black- and white-lists – based on rules non-predatory publishers should follow – favours long established over new inexperienced publishers (whatever their intention), based on history of practice
- Open peer review systems – makes the peer review process transparent, but also makes articles openly available prior to peer-review, leading to suspect research potentially being taken for fact before being reviewed
- New metrics – current metrics measure too little and can be manipulated, but creating a perfect metric is not possible
Concludes no one method works on its own and the most important thing is to find a way to remove incentives for researchers and publishers engaging in fraudulent practices. Given that publishers make money, either from the author or the reader, and fraudulent practices reduce their outgoings, I can’t see how you can ever remove the incentive for fraudulent publishing – it makes people money! All you can do is reduce the incentive by making their customers (readers and authors) aware of the issue (e.g. via the three methods discussed in this thesis).
Weinheimer, J. 2015. ACAT DOAJ and predatory publishers. First Thus. [Blog post] http://blog.jweinheimer.net/2015/09/acat-doaj-and-predatory-publishers.html
Interesting thoughts on predatory publishers’ journals in library catalogues. Raises the issue of legal risk if libraries label journals as “predatory” and suggests using linked data, but relying on Beall’s list (and an API that doesn’t (yet) exist).