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Beall's List

Some academic journals have embraced a “gold open access model” of publishing, wherein the scholars whose work appears in the journal pay for the privilege. Bob speaks with Jeffrey Beall, an academic librarian at the University of Colorado Denver who has assembled a list of "predatory journals" - journals that may be more interested in profit than academic contributions

MP3 here.


If you listen to Beall's comments on (possible, potential, perhaps) predatory publishers, you also need to know more about Beall. I strongly recommend "The Sad Case of Jeffrey Beall."

I think a lot of people don't realise that before the NIH, Wellcome etc started up their mandates ALL articles were given to the publishers for free with no reuse, no free access to the public being given.
The next step is stopping the extortionate fees for what little they really do in return for others giving them free content.
Those journals Beall lists are not these journals, are not the big publishers, learned societies etc, but are fakes. Simple as that. It's not difficult to see the differences.
If you are a Librarian, with no academic record, no output, no professional recognition and you are being offered your work in X to be published for a few thousand dollars. It's pretty clear that it's a fake.
Or do the people who get their bosses to pay to puff up their CV's not want the truth to come out?

So 100% of the journals and publishers mentioned by Beall are absolute fakes that anybody can spot. That's remarkable. It's also nonsense. What they are, are publishers that Beall has come up with some reason to dislike, in his sole 100% one-man role as investigating officer, prosecutor, judge and jury. Some of them are predatory. Some are questionable. Some are, well, Beall doesn't like them. Has he looked at each one of the 9,200-odd journals represented in his list? I doubt it...and even if he had, one man should not be making these determinations. (More about this--quite a bit more--some time in June 2014.)

By the way, very few librarians would ever put up "a few thousand dollars" to have their work published--partly because they don't have that kind of money, partly because most librarians (except academic librarians) don't have publish-or-perish jobs, partly because a growing number of the top journals in librarianship are gold OA with no author-side fees whatsoever, including College & Research Libraries and Information Technology and Libraries.

The main point of your comment is well made: a distributed model for assessing predatory journals over a group of interested people would be far more transparent than Beall's crusade, as admirable as the aims of it are.

Secondly you've spotted a common mistake with the use of the phrase 'gold' OA, that is made in the original post - one I've made myself. institutional Repositories are 'green', and things that look like traditional journals are 'gold', whether or not they have article processing charges or not. I'm sure people can quote alternative definitions, but it seems that in common usage (and usage rules) gold means 'journal-like'.