Money making journals (A research internet fraud)
Money making journals / Paid Journals Research Fraud)

Internet is very useful said by the people who use it for fair purposes. Internet is very very useful said by the people who use it for unfair purposes.

Money Making Journals / Paid Journals

Why? As it has provided them with a hidden identity to cheat simple people easily, one of the examples of this kind of cheating is money making journals / paid journals in the research domain. The money making journals / paid journals phrase looks strange or may be even stupid thing to say for some people. So, we first provide some categorization for the journals.

(1) Non Publication Fee Journals dont ask for any processing or publication fee from the authors (If you need hard copy with colored photos then they may ask for color printing charges). They are mostly not free access. Subscription is required by the publishers to get access to the full articles. They usually provide author with two options (1) freely publish paper online but the article will be not be free to download without subscription or (2) pay some fee e.g. 3000 USD to make the paper free to access. As this second option needs too much money so authors prefer to publish freely. These journals are mostly high quality as they are not asking for changes so mostly they publish only high quality research.

(2) Publication Fee Journals (Money Making Journals) ask for processing or publication fee from the authors. They are usually free access so papers are freely downloadable. The charges varies from 200 USD to 2000 USD usually. They have mostly low quality papers due to the reason of their more interest in money making, although there can be few exceptions. They usually have very fast review process due to interest in making money quickly.

Research Fraud

It is a fact that money making journals which ask for too much amount such as 500 USD, 500 Euro, 1000 Euro, 100 USD per page etc are easy to publish. It is other amount than that of color printing cost which is usually demanded by all journals. Money making journals sometime even have impact factor. E.g. IJICIC Journal [2] has done what is given in the following. Japan, India and Afriac has very special repute for this kind of journals and publishers.

Money making journals / paid journals have a very interesting fraud history. They starts and creates a community of people which can pay or whose institutes can pay for such a huge amount for each paper publication and are not aware of this type of internet fraud. Even if authors are aware sometime about this misconduct they are just greedy or desperate to have quick publications for quick promotions and other financial benefits. Editor accepts papers very easily and in quick time frame and once they accept it they ask the authors to cite a large number of papers of that specific journal to increase number of citations per year to get impact factor. Here it is necessary to mention that Thomson ISI which after checking some simple things that the journal have webpage, editorial board, reviewers are from different countries, timely published and most importantly the journal is cited frequently etc assigns impact factor. Self citations play a great role for money making journals to get impact factor. Thomson ISI assigns impact factor initially and the journal is on probation for 2 years. If that paid journal is unable to reduce self citations to less than 20% or sometime 30% of total citations the journal is black listed by the Thomson ISI [1] and Imppact factor is given for next year. In the mean while that journal team earns a lot of money as they publish many volumes per year and many papers in each volume.

Once the journal is black listed the journal editor refuses to take new contributions for review as they fool authors by saying they are busy, while reality is being blacklisted. And finally that journal either stops publishing or continue but now they do not push authors to cite papers from that journal. Eventually their journal reduces self citations to less than 20% and they may come back to impact factor journal’s list but this time the impact factor will be very low. E.g. before if it was 3.0 after recovering it will have about 0.2, or 0.3. These kind of journals temper-orally or permanently provides an edge to the people for faculty positions in underdeveloped countries like India, Malaysia, Pakistan, Saudi Arab, Jordan, Oman etc. Developed countries researchers which are quite mature in research things are not deceived by these kinds of journals.

The fraud is not complete. It has loops. There are chances that the team will start a new journal with another name after closing the previous one and repeat the same with innocent or willingly deceivable interest driven authors.

Conclusions: There is a dire need to rethink the promotion policies to stop authors from publishing in paid journals due to desperation of being promoted quickly and retain the jobs. These kind of journals are creating a great tensions and discrimination for the authors who are not publishing in these journals due to different reasons, such as, quality focus, not willing to pay to publish their work as they feel degraded if paying for publishing their hard-work based research output. They are focusing on high quality non paid journals which critically evaluate work and straight forwardly rejects low quality work, those journals also takes time if they think work is publishable after revisions they ask for major revisions also to improve the quality of work and many more.