skip to content

Predatory Publishing

The topic of predatory publishing has long been a problem in the academic world and is now bringing the Open Access movement into discredit. Predatory publishing refers to publishers or journals that charge fees for services they do not provide or only provide in poor quality.

In the field of scientific publishing, Open Access publishers or journals request submissions by mass e-mail. For some, the dubious intentions are immediately obvious, as the e-mails and websites are full of typos. For others, this is much more difficult to detect as the web presence and title designations are reminiscent of the appearance of already established journals. Occasionally, the names of renowned scientists are mentioned as editors without their knowledge or consent.

In order to protect itself from predatory publishing, the  „Think Check Submit“ initiative has developed a checklist to help you check the trustworthiness and reliability of a scientific journal (see below). In case of doubt, you should refrain from submitting to such a journal.
In general, of course, it cannot be said that articles submitted or published in Predatory Journals are automatically non-scientific. This depends on the individual case. However, the (usually) missing "peer review procedure", which checks and proves the correctness of the developed theses by other scientists, is highly problematic. Also, it cannot be said that all Open Access journals publish without a quality check. Many renowned, listed Open Access journals are also based on a peer review procedure.

Unfortunately, the topic also concerns so-called Predatory Conferences, which are massively advertising for submissions. They demand unusually high participation fees from speakers. When choosing a conference, you should therefore consider criteria similar to those used in publishing: Is the organiser known in the specialist community? What about other participants (chairs, etc.)? Are all contributions accepted without detailed examination? Is participation particularly expensive? In case of doubt, you should refrain from submitting a paper here as well.
Further information can be found on the following pages: