Sunday, April 20, 2008

The Bentham Journals

Some of the guys over at JREF have dug up some interesting information regarding the Bentham Journals, the company that Steven Jones is all proud published his letter to the editor, for $600 of course. Some highlights:

Chris Reed, Distinguished Professor of Chemistry (University of California, Riverside), offers the following modest proposal on CHMINF-L:

Colleagues:In last week's interesting CHMINF-L discussion on Nature's proliferation of new journals, faculty habits, and the serials market, I saw no mention of an ongoing parallel onslaught by Bentham. In the past month, I have received no less that three invitations to join the editorial boards of new Bentham journals -- "Current this", "Frontiers of that" -- none in areas of my real expertise.The same old tactics are being used: exploiting a faculty weakness for seeing one's name in print, offering a career advance by having Editorial Board appointments on one's CV at promotion time, flattering authors with invitations to contribute papers in special issues, etc. All this effectively silences faculty from speaking out, or even caring about, the issues librarians understand so well. It is one of the reasons I am advocating that promotion policies at the University of California specify that appointments to the editorial boards of low quality, overpriced journals should count against promotion. The idea may not be so outrageous in five or ten years time.

And this one:

I was particularly pleased with the following:

Based on your record of contributions in the field of Education, I would like to invite you to submit to me your CV with current list of publications so that we may consider you as a possible *Editorial Board Member* for the journal.

Since I my record in the field of Education is nil, I feel particularly well-qualified. I have never written a thing in an Education journal. I don't know whether or not to be honored to be invited to contribute to the Open Journal of Sleep.

If you look at the web page of the "Open Journal Advisory Board"
you will find something remarkable. There is a list of about 40 economists who are "members of the advisory board," all but one of whose last names start with the letters A-C and only one of whom I have ever heard of. I suppose these are the top of the list of people who responded to the spam letters. What an embarrassing list to have one's name on.

Check out the thread for some more great info by Lashl, TAM and more.