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Predatory journals have rapidly increased their publication volumes from 53,000 in 2010 to an estimated 420,000 articles in 2014, published by around 8,000 active journals. Early on, publishers with more than 100 journals dominated the market, but since 2012 publishers in the 10–99 journal size category have captured the largest market share. The regional distribution of both the publisher’s country and authorship is highly skewed, in particular Asia and Africa contributed three quarters of authors. Authors paid an average article processing charge of 178 USD per article for articles typically published within 2 to 3 months of submission.
Opportunistic publishers share several characteristics:
*Charging authors/funding bodies to publish articles open access is a model used by many reputable journal publishers and is not the single factor used to determine if a journal should be considered "predatory."
Many junk open access journals send invitations to publish in future issues or serve on editorial boards. Before submitting an article or agreeing to a seat on an editorial board, investigate the reputation and legitimacy of the journal.
Fortunately, opportunistic journals are easily detectable. Steps to determine whether a journal or publisher is predatory include:
Sometimes, what appears to be an indicator of journal quality is actually meaningless. Consider the following:
Attribution: Eastern Michigan University
Jeffrey Beall, a librarian at the University of Colorado Denver, has compiled lists "potential, possible, or probable predatory" journals and publishers.
A journal or publisher's inclusion on the list does not mean it definitely engages in unscrupulous practices. The lists are based on Beall's opinions and research, and change frequently as journals and publishers modify their business practices.
Authors using these lists to screen publishers and standalone journals are encouraged to reach their own conclusions.
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