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Avoiding Hijacked Journals and Predatory Publishers

picture of a stack of print journals

Predatory publishers who attempt to take financial advantage of academics seeking a home for their research have been a growing concern in the scholarly publishing world. In a recent post from from Scholarly Open Access: Critical analysis of scholarly open-access publishing, the issue predatory publishers and hijacked journals was raised. From the site:

"Sometimes someone will create a counterfeit website that pretends to be the website of a legitimate scholarly journal. The website creators then solicit manuscript submissions for the hijacked version of the journal, pocketing the money. In some cases the legitimate versions of the journals are only published in print form and they may not have websites."

In their February 2014 paper, Hijacked Journals and Predatory Publishers: Is There a Need to Re-Think How to Assess the Quality of Academic Research?, Jalalian and Mahboobi suggest several ways to help avoid getting caught in these scams which often resemble other online traps. For example, ignore or be wary of unsolicited call-for-papers or emails saying that your work has already been selected for publication.You can also check for more information about these journals through various indexes and databases such Web of Science, or other subject specific databases. In general exercise caution when dealing with a journal you aren't familiar with whose promises sound to good to be true. Take a closer look at their paper for more information.

A list of potential, possible, or probable predatory scholarly open-access publishers is maintained here: