Just arrived in my email inbox:
Dear Dr. Jonathan Purtle, Greetings!!! We solicit your valuable contribution for the Journal Family Medicine & Medical Science Research … Dear Researcher, publish in the International Journal of Medical and Applied Sciences … Decision on your paper within 5 days.
Like many academics, I'm increasingly bombarded with emails that offer an opportunity to promptly publish my research in open-access journals, often for a fee.
Open-access journals have proliferated in recent years. As opposed to "traditional" publications that charge readers (often institutions) a hefty fee to access journal content, open-access journals provide their content for free on the web, and typically charge writers to publish their work. Open-access journals are a good thing because they make scientific information available to audiences beyond academics with library subscriptions. Problems arise, however, when the financial incentive for open-access journals to accept articles results in the publication of poor quality research that hasn't undergone rigorous peer-review.
-- When no one is identified as the journal’s editor, or when information regarding the academic affiliations of the editorial board isn’t provided;
-- When the journal isn’t indexed in standard library databases (i.e.,
if its content focuses on health—or even just on
-- When the journal has an overtly western name, but serves primarily as a “vanity press” for researchers in developing counties (e.g., the
—there doesn’t appear to be much “British” about the journal other than its publication fee, listed in British pounds).
Open-access journals provide an opportunity for more people to be consumers of research and make informed health decisions—but buyer (or, rather, "non-buyer") beware.