A soap box for a surgeon who has practiced in a wide range of environments including a Tertiary Referral Teaching Hospital, District Hospital, small Rural Hospital, Private Practice and Academic Practice. He loves being a surgeon.
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Tuesday, January 6, 2015
Predatory Journals. Academics Are as Much a Part of the Problem.
Medical doctors in academia are gullible.
They are so gullible that they are amongst a number of groups, the perfect
target for predatory publishing companies. The definition for a predatory journal
or publishing company can be found on this link.They appear to be growing in numbers at a seemingly exponential
rate.It is obviously worth the effort
for the creators of these on line publishing companies who try every tactic to
trick academics into paying excessive fees to publish. In other words, there are always enough
gullible individuals to make if worth the effort. This is all well documented
and whilst there is growing awareness of these scams, it is disappointing to
see how academics are quick to give up their credibility by becoming a part of
the problem.They allow themselves to
become the bait to attract other academics to submit their manuscripts to the
I get these emails all the time. These are invitations to join the editorial boards of these junk journals. This one gives the impression of being US based but when you visit the website, it is obvious that the authors of the website are not native English speakers and most people would be able to work out that it is really based in India.
The emails often butter up the recipient
with glorified praise about their eminence in the field. That aside, being invited to be a member of an editorial board is generally considered to be something of value and the more editorial boards one can boast the better. Without much thought, academics respond in
the affirmative and their picture and bio soon appears on the ‘journal’ website. These predatory journals have also been in
the habit of placing academics on their editorial boards without permission but
from my own investigations, it appears that the vast majority have actually
consented to the process without having given a thought to where they have
gifted their own good name as well as the good name of their university.
Disclosure - Henry Woo is on the editorial boards of Prostate Cancer Prostatic Diseases, Prostate International and World Journal of Men's Health which are all Pubmed/Medline indexed. He is also the Editor in Chief of BJUI Knowledge, a new CME portal of the reputable BJUI Company.