The University of Hyderabad with the Centre for Publication Ethics, Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU) co-hosted a webinar on Publication Ethics on 16 September, 2020.

Cabells International, the world’s largest and most trusted name in the scrutiny of predatory journals, was represented by Simon Linacre, Director of International Marketing & Development.

Linacre began by pointing to one fact ‘India is reported to have the highest number of authors publishing in predatory journals, and the highest number of predatory journals based there [in India]’

He then listed some of the chief dangers of publishing in predatory journals: your work will be hard to find (it disappears or is never published), peer-review is sub-par, there may be researchers who take the work published in these seriously, among others.

Linacre then offered a quick survey of the features of predatory journals: Article Processing Charges, mediocre peer-review practices, fake data (from Impact Factor to editorial board members), written in very poor English, quick publishing time frame, lack of clear focus (being extremely broad in the scope of articles they publish), etc. There are, he said 70 ‘behavioural indicators’ of predatory journals, which Cabells employs. He also cautioned against dubious indexes which, he said, were mere compilations and lists of journals.

He underscored the damage to authors and the project of scholarly work.

Linacre then fielded questions from the participants. Many were concerned about the best modes of identifying a predatory journal, the loss of their published work when the journal was taken off the SCOPUS index, etc. Linacre also ran a demo on a journal (whose title was offered by a participant), pointing out the fake IF (far too high for a Humanities/Social Sciences journal), the questionable ISSN, the extremely poor English in which the Journal write-up was done (Call for Paper instead of Call for Papers), etc.

He spoke in conclusion of the Cabells List of Predatory Journals and their Journalytics.

The University of Hyderabad thanks Cabells, CPE-SPPU and Simon Linacre for the webinar