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Predatory Publishing

A guide on predatory publishing, legitimate journal recommendations, and open access.

The unexpected email

Predatory publishers begin contact with an email.  You will receive a solicitation to be an author, or asked to serve on the editorial board.  These emails typically sound the same and contain numerous spelling or grammatical errors.  If you receive one, you should verify the journal, or contact a librarian for assistance. 

Real Life Example

Screenshot of an example of a predatory email. This email has poorly formatted name information, multiple spellling and grammar mistakes, and vague and confusing instructions.

This is an example of an actual solicitation email an ATSU librarian has previously received. Note the improper name and title, use of informal language and styling, poor spelling and grammar, and overall confusing message.

Sample Email: Seeking Publication

Dear Author,

Hope our e-mail finds you well and in healthy mood.

I am impressed by your quality work and I really value your contribution towards recent work.

Journal X has been scheduled to release Volume 3 Issue 2 by March 31st, 2018.  

I hope Journal X goes a long way in 2018 with the association of experienced personalities like you, as we believe that, your contribution towards the research field is absolutely prominent. I would be glad to have your active participation in the journal activities that will be a good start especially in the new year.

We consider Mini Reviews, Original Research/ Review Article, Case Reports, Short Communication, Conference Proceedings, Commentaries, Book Reviews etc

This is not a spam message, and has been sent to you because of your eminence in the field. If, however, you do not want to receive any email in future then reply us with the subject remove /opt-out. We are concern for your privacy.

We look forward to a close and lasting scientific relationship for the benefit of scientific community.

Sample Email: Need Only 2 Articles!

Dear Dr. SMITH,

Hope you are doing great!!

We have gone through your papers and find it is a wonderful resource for upcoming works.

I am pleased to inform you that Journal Y is planning to release Volume 5 Issue 1 by 3rd week of April and we only need two articles to accomplish this issue. In fact I am afraid as I am having hardly few days in hand to release the issue. Hence I have chosen some brilliant people like you to support us for release the upcoming issue. So please support us with your contribution of 2 Page Mini-Review towards publication in Journal Y.

Journal X publishes all kinds of papers in all areas of the medical field.

Anticipating for a positive response!

Sample Email: Seeking Editorial Board Member

Dear Dr. X,

It is our immense pleasure to invite you as an Editorial Board member for Journal Y.

Publisher Y in its bag having 3500+ Open Access quality articles and more than 5000 EB has come about in the short period and we have indexed in repositories like ICMJE & Pubs Hub, that adds value to the quality work published and helps in easy access throughout the globe. 

Being aware of your proficiency and expertise in various fields we invite you to be honorable editor for Journal Y. In fact having your profile in our Journal adds visibility to us as well as many viewers will cite your profile.

If you are willing to accept our invitation to serve as an editor to the mentioned journal, kindly send us your CV, Biography, Research Interest & Recent portrait photograph.

Do not hesitate to contact us for any queries. We await your positive response.

Best Regards,
Questionable Journal