Deceptive Publishing: Why We Need a Blacklist, and Some Suggestions on How to Do It Right
In an earlier posting, I suggested that the term “predatory publishing” has perhaps become too vague and subjective to be useful, and I suggested “bad faith” as a possible replacement term. But in light of the subsequent discussion in the comments section of that posting and after continuing to think about the issue, I’d like to suggest another alternative to “predatory,” one that offers more precision and usefulness: “deceptive.” Deception, it seems to me, is the common thread that binds all of the behaviors that are most commonly cited as “predatory” in journal publishing, and I think it’s the most meaningful and appropriate criterion for placing a publisher on a blacklist. Furthermore, “deception” is (unlike “predation”) a concept with a fairly clear and unambiguous meaning in this context.
One note up front: this posting will focus on deceptive journal publishing.