Retraction of a previous post about pseudojournals


On 09 April 2013, I published a post entitled, “Keeping tabs on pseudojournals.”

I just modified that post to indicate a retraction, with the following text:

Since I published this post, I’ve been made aware of an alternative agenda in Jeffrey Beall’s crusade against predatory publishers. His real crusade is, apparently, against Open Access publishing. This agenda is clearly indicated in his own words in an open access publication entitled, “The Open-Access Movement is Not Really about Open Access.” More information about Beall’s agenda can be found here. I am not removing this post from the site, but I am disavowing its contents as positive coverage of the work of Beall may undermine the long-term goal of allowing all scientists, and the public, to access peer-reviewed publications as easily and inexpensively as possible.

Months ago, I saw the Beall’s paper, that tried to equate open-access publishing with poor quality scholarship. This makes no sense whatsoever, because many open access journals have rigorous peer review. (For example, I posted the reviews from my a recent-ish PLOS ONE paper of mine. No doubts about that rigor.) The suggestion that an open access publishing model is tantamount to predatory publication is not only absurd, but also is intellectually dishonest. I could only image that this position is either a result of incredibly feeble reasoning, or is politically motivated to help publishers maintain their oligarchy of the academic publishing industry.

Regardless of the reasons, Beall’s crusade against the open access to academic research is folly and I don’t want to be associated with support for his work. Now, academia needs a strong, rational and transparent voice to combat genuine predatory publishers that lack rigorous peer review and are guilty of academic payola. It seems Jeffrey Beall doesn’t fit that bill.