Predatory Journals Revisited

I recently was asked by a library user about how to distinguish a good publisher’s or conference organizer’s invitation from a predatory one. She often receives emails inviting her to review journal submissions, present a meeting abstract, publish a paper, or speak at a conference.

These types of invitations continue to pose a challenge for the research community and those wanting to share their research findings. Typically, a publication that proactively pursues research manuscripts from the scientific and medical communities, falsifies information about their editorial board, has a poor peer-review system, and is focused on obtaining publication costs and assuring the researcher that their work will get published, are the ones that should raise a red flag.

What can a researcher do to ensure they submit their manuscript to a reputable journal?  There is a website entitled, “Think. Check. Submit.”, which was developed by several organizations focused on scholarly communications activities. They partnered together in response to issues involving deceptive publishing, and developed an awareness campaign and easy-to-use checklist that researchers can consult when investigating whether a journal can be trusted.

The MSK Library staff can also help researchers to ensure they submit to the right journal by investigating email invitations received by authors. We can check impact factors, where the journals/conferences are indexed, contact information, and editorial board members’ credentials and subject expertise.

If you need to distinguish between trustworthy and predatory journals, don’t hesitate to reach out and ASK US.

Donna Gibson
Director of Library Services