Monday, May 4, 2020

Institute of Mathematics and Management Is Staunch in Its Niche in the Blue Ocean

"With over 07 years of excellence in the educational and research spheres, the Institute of Mathematics and Management (IMM) is staunch in its niche of being the quality education, research, and analytical support service provider." Its "Vision" is "To be the best education and research provider in the world within the Blue Ocean Strategy." The "Staff" webpage lists two names: Managing Director Major K. M. Udaya Banda Konarasinghe (Retired), and Academic Director Dr (Mrs.) W. G. Samanthi Konarasinghe.

IMM purports to publish four journals. I cannot find any content for them. The Publications page also lists two books -- Circular Model and Sama Circular Model. These "books" are three- and four-page Word documents. Perhaps they are summaries of books available elsewhere? The first book explains that "The Circular Model was introduced in year 2016. It was a part of the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD in Statistics) thesis of [IMM's Academic Director], University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka." The second book begins, "The Sama Circular Model was introduced in year 2018. It was the improved version of [her] Circular Model." Both books assert that in the model, Fourier "Series, sin(kωt) and cos(kωt) are independent."

The Staff webpage of IMM includes a message from the Managing Director that notes
Initiative to the IMM was not taken to turn the market Red. We sail in the spacious “Blue Ocean” by creating new knowledge for the world. The motto, "Determined, Dedicated and Done" is the lighthouse of the IMM.
The Academic Director reports that "[s]cientific knowledge is highly valued as it allows us to develop new technologies, solve practical problems, and make informed decisions." That's good to know. "It is believed that scientific knowledge makes the world a better place for living." Even so, she adds that
I have my doubts about whether sciences are being used for making a better world or the other way round! Mathematics is considered as the mother of all sciences because they are all born of it. The mother's love for children is unbounded. Her capability in Management is not comparable. Her language is universal. We, the Institute of Mathematics and Management determined to use the universal language “Mathematics” for making a better world with love and compassion.


IMM's logo, shown above, "is based on 'Set Theory'" and "describes the objectives, goals, and business strategy of IMM."
[T]he Blue Circle is the Universal set and the Black Circle is a subset of it. The Black Circle represents mathematical-statistical tools. The Integral sign and the function notation inside the black circle say, irrespective of the field, all the management problems are converted into mathematical language and solve them by using mathematical techniques. The outer blue circle represents the "Blue Ocean Strategy", which is the business strategy of IMM. Taking a Blue Ocean approach means our goal is not to outperform the competition. Instead, we aim to redraw industry boundaries by innovation and operate within that new space, making the competition immaterial. In short, IMM adopts Blue Ocean Strategy in business; converts real-world problems into Mathematical Language, to achieve sustainability in Management
If predatory publishers organizers are ones that sell journal space without meaningful editorial screening and services, IMM is not a predatory publisher. Its website states that "Our priority is to publish Noble researches without any financial, technical, and legal barriers to the author." Presumably, its revenues come a "Diploma Course in Applied Statistics & Research Methodology" and "The IMM Research consultancy ... for academicians, researchers, and postgraduate research students." It also supplies "business analytical services" and "scientific guidance for portfolio selection and investment decisions."
Email
  • From: W. G. Konarasinghe
    Posted to an American Statistical Association discussion list
    Date: May 1, 2020 3:58 AM
    Dear Friends,
    Wishing you a good day!
    I am happy to inform you that We, Institute of Mathematics and Management is ready to publish journals and to conduct international conferences.
    Please find the details on our website: ...
    Our journals are free of charge for publication
    I invite you to join our team of editorial members and reviewers.
    Research papers from you, your colleagues and students are warmly welcome for journals and upcoming conferences.
    RGDS
    ------------------------------
    W.G. Samanthi Konarasinghe( PhD)
    Academic Director / Statistical Consultant
    Institute of Mathematics & Management,
    Sri Lanka
    ------------------------------

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Flaky Journal Prices

Some flaky journals are so anxious for content that they will lower their advertised fees or publish for free. That is what some authors of spoofs have discovered after submitting absurd papers. "Neuroskeptic" at Discover Magazine prepared a "spoof manuscript about 'midi-chlorians' – the fictional entities which live inside cells and give Jedi their powers in Star Wars." It was filled with "references to the galaxy far, far away, and submitted ... to nine journals under the names of Dr Lucas McGeorge and Dr Annette Kin." The author found that
The American Journal of Medical and Biological Research (SciEP) accepted the paper, but asked for a $360 fee, which I didn’t pay. Amazingly, three other journals not only accepted but actually published the spoof. [T]he International Journal of Molecular Biology: Open Access (MedCrave), Austin Journal of Pharmacology and Therapeutics (Austin) and American Research Journal of Biosciences (ARJ). I hadn’t expected this, as all those journals charge publication fees, but I never paid them a penny. \1/
A biologist, threatening to withdraw a paper on "What Up with Birds?" and send it to Nature, negotiated a $1,600 charge down to $1,027, to $99, and then, pleading "financial crisis," to $0. The journal manager reported that he had "done session with our Higher Authorities" to obtain this one-time waiver. \2/ The abstract of the article, which appeared this month, reads as follows:
Many people wonder: what’s the deal with birds? This is a common query. Birds are pretty weird. I mean, they have feathers. WTF? Most other animals don’t have feathers. To investigate this issue, I looked at some birds. I looked at a woodpecker, a parrot, and a penguin. They were all pretty weird! In conclusion, we may never know the deal with birds, but further study is warranted.
The paper and Iris's alleged peer review are discussed in other blog postings. \3/

UPDATE 5/9/20: On ResearchGate today, Malek Alghdeir commented that "I was invited to publish a chapter in a book by IntechOpen. Then asked me to pay 1400 £! firstly, the editor of my chapter suggests a great discount, but after that, they accepted to publish my chapter free."

NOTES
  1. Neuroskeptic, Predatory Journals Hit By 'Star Wars' Sting, Discover, July 22, 2017 5:57 AM, https://www.discovermagazine.com/mind/predatory-journals-hit-by-star-wars-sting
  2. https://twitter.com/evornithology/status/1224775369783435264?s=20 (hilarious Twitter thread)
  3. Iris Publishers Releases the World's First Quantification of the Deal with Birds, Flaky Academic Journals, Apr. 26, 2020; Ryan F. Mandelbaum, Sketchy Science Journal Publishes Article Titled 'What's the Deal With Birds?', Gizmodo, Apr. 17, 2020 4:40PM, https://gizmodo.com/sketchy-science-journal-publishes-article-titled-whats-1842924936/amp

Iris Publishers Releases the World's First Quantification of the Deal with Birds

"Our curated content is original and rigorously peer-reviewed, so be assured of the premium quality information, checked and approved by highly acclaimed academic editors and subject matter experts." -- Iris Publishers, About Us

the Scientific Journal of Research and Reviews (SJRR) is part of Iris's "great podium." The lead research article in the April 2020 issue is Daniel Baldassarre's "What the Deal with Birds?" The abstract is refreshingly colloquial:
Abstract
Many people wonder: what’s the deal with birds? This is a common query. Birds are pretty weird. I mean, they have feathers. WTF? Most other animals don’t have feathers. To investigate this issue, I looked at some birds. I looked at a woodpecker, a parrot, and a penguin. They were all pretty weird! In conclusion, we may never know the deal with birds, but further study is warranted.
This tantalizing description hardly does justice to the heavily referenced work of scholarship that follows. Here is a sampling:
Introduction
Birds are very strange. Some people are like “whoa they’re flying around and stuff, what’s the deal with that?” This sentiment is shared by people across socioeconomic backgrounds. Figuring out what the deal is with birds is of the utmost scientific importance. It is now widely appreciated that the majority of socially monogamous passerine species are weird [1]. In species with moderately high extra-pair mating and paternal care, we need to understand what is going on with them [2]. In territorial species, what are they even doing [3] and they do all sorts of weird stuff [4] (but see [5]). ...
Material and Methods
Study species and general field methods
I looked at three different birds: a woodpecker, a parrot, and a penguin. I looked really close at them, squinting and everything, to try and figure out what was up with them. ... Detailed population monitoring and paternity assignment methods are described elsewhere [10]. Briefly, I watched them really close for quite a while [13-15]. To eliminate potential confounds, I thus conducted my experiments only on animals that I knew for sure were birds, and no other things like bugs and bats. ...
Discussion
This is the first study I am aware of to attempt to quantify the deal with birds. Unfortunately, the results were ambiguous, although Bayesian approaches may prove useful in the future. This study has implications for climate change research. When presented with weird behavior, birds exhibited a multimodal response including physical aggression and duetting, both of which were repeatable across highly variable contexts. ...
I do not know whether the "highly qualified and expert Editorial committee ... indulged in scrutinizing articles with stringent peer review process" were impressed with the acknowledgments at the end of the article:
We thank Big Bird from Sesame Street for comments on the manuscript. Several trained monkeys transcribed videos.
The author asked the editor "if they were a predatory journal and he assured [him] they weren’t. He said [the] paper was reviewed by three experts" and supplied an "Article Review Form" with the following "Specific Review Comments and Suggestions: THE MATERIAL PRESENTED IS VERY INTERESTING, THE ARTICLE ACCEPTED FOR PUBLICATION."

SOURCES
FURTHER READING

Monday, February 24, 2020

Research Infotext's Immense Pleasure

Research Infotext seems to be a collection of names of journals and editors in search of publications. Clicking around in the top two journals listed in the "journals catalogue" produces only the names of editors. The advertised journals have absolutely nothing in their "current issues" and "archives."

The journal that spammed me is equally empty. The email came from "John GETZ, ME." A JM Getz is a coauthor of six articles in the field of forensic pathology indexed on Google Scholar. The journal refers to "Prof. John Getz," but it gives no academic or other affiliation for him. The US members of the editorial board are said to be
  • "Michael I. Schaffer, Ph.D, Fellow of the American Board of Forensic Toxicology, VP Laboratory Operations, Psychemedics Corporation, California, USA," and
  • "DAVID E. MOODY, Ph.D., Center for Human Toxicology, University of Utah, United States."
The domain name researchinfotext.com is registered by proxy (with GoDaddy's help). However, at the same IP address is rinfotext.com, registered by Narendra Nalavalli of Ashburn, Virginia (narendranalavalli@gmail.com, 315-998-2964), which mostly matches the contact information on the website. However, neither Google Maps, Zillow.com, nor the US Postal service's zipcode finder recognizes "4192 Devonwood Way." (The address provided for the journal is 4192 Devonwood Way, Ashburn, VA 20148. Only large, single-family houses are situated on a Devonwood Way in Dulles, Virginia 20148.)

A Narendra Nalavalli also registered the names tlkumarcreations.com and teamkumar.com. The latter solicits donations for Kumar Prescod, a very young boxer "Full of Raw Talent and Laser Focus". The registration is now in GoDaddy's hands, but it originally came from Narendra Nalavalli, kumar_lavan(at)yahoo.co.in, 409, tilak road, tirupati, India. Although DomainBigData.com links all three, perhaps these two are the work of a different Narenda Nalavalli.
Email
  • From: john_getz.ijfs@mailer.researchinfotext.com On Behalf Of John Getz
    Date: Monday, February 24, 2020 1:39 PM
    Subject: Heads Up - Require One Paper | IJFS Journal
    Dear Dr. David H Kaye,
    I would like to introduce Infotext Journal of Forensic Sciences [IJFS] which publishes high quality and novel papers please read the journal here. ... [← There are no papers in the journal. Maybe someday?]
    We greatly appreciate your recent [ten-year-old] study "The good, the bad, the ugly: the NAS report on strengthening forensic science in America" [← This "recent" paper is ten years old and was never particularly impressive.] and it is our immense pleasure to bring it to your kind notice that manuscript submissions (research, review, case report, short communication, Commentary, etc.) are now open towards the upcoming issue of our Journal.
    It would be great if you could submit your article on or before 10th March 2020. The manuscript can be submitted as an email attachment to john_getz.ijfs@rinfotext.com
    Note: We make open-access available by enabling you to select an APC that is appropriate based on your funding and financial circumstances.
    Awaiting the favor of your prompt attention.
    Regards,
    John GETZ, ME
  • From: john_getz.ijfs@mailer.researchinfotext.com On Behalf Of John Getz
    Sent: Wednesday, March 18, 2020 3:39 PM
    Subject: Followup | Journal of Forensic Sciences
    Hi David H Kaye,
    When you get a minute, could you please drop me a line regarding my last email on your paper submission?
    I would like to introduce Infotext Journal of Forensic Sciences [IJFS] which publishes high quality and novel papers ... IJFS has received good responses from authors with a contribution of 4 manuscripts for the Current Issue of Volume 2020; we just require one article to release the issue. If you would contribute a short article of 1 or 2 pages such as short commentary (or) any kind of article so that we can release the issue. I would be happy to a quick review and answer any questions if you have given any additional thought to my proposal.
    I welcome you to submit the work in a word document as an attachment to this mail.
    On behalf of the Editorial Team of the IJFS, I thank you very much in advance for your submission and look forward to work with you.
    With appreciation,
    Prof. John Getz, ME
  • From: editor.ijfs@mailer.researchinfotext.com On Behalf Of John Getz, ME
    Sent: Wednesday, June 10, 2020 7:02 PM
    Subject: Followup; IJFS EOM
    Hi Dr. David H Kaye,
    Maybe it's a few days long since we have contacted you, as we have received a message to contact you in the future that showed your trust and confidence in us. [← Are they kidding? No such message came from me!] With reference to your article titled The good, the bad, the ugly: the NAS report on strengthening forensic science in America found your research interests close to the scope of our Infotext Journal of Forensic Sciences [IJFS]. If you have any article for publication kindly submit on any of your interesting topics for our upcoming issue of IJFS. ... Currently, IJFS has indexed in Research Gate, Google Scholar, and Cross Ref.
    You can send your article as an attachment to this email or to submissions@resinfotext.com on/ before June 30th, 2020. We will be waiting for your reply. [← It will be a long wait.]
    With Regards,
    Prof. John Getz, ME
  • From: editor.ijfs@mailer.researchinfotext.com On Behalf Of Prof. John Getz
    Sent: Friday, June 19, 2020 2:04 PM
    Subject: Final Followup; [← I wish!] IJFS Journal EOM
    Hi David H Kaye,
    With reference to your previous article “The good, the bad, the ugly: the NAS report on strengthening forensic science in America.”
    Infotext Journal of Forensic Sciences [IJFS] has received good responses from authors with a contribution of 4 manuscripts for the Current Issue of Volume 2020; we just require one article to release the issue. If you would contribute a short article of 1 or 2 pages such as short commentary (or) any kind of article so that we can release the issue. I would be happy to a quick review and answer any questions if you have given any additional thought to my proposal.
    Note: Discounted publication fee 299 USD only. I welcome you to submit the work in a word document as an attachment to this mail.
    I would be happy to give a quick review and answer any questions if you have given any additional thought to my proposal. Thanks & with appreciation,
    Jhon [sic] Getz, ME

Friday, February 21, 2020

IJERA Avoids Various Verticals

International Journal of Engineering Research and Applications (IJERA) sends spam from an unnamed "Editor in Chief." That makes sense considering that no editor in chief is listed on the website. Indeed, the six "editorial board members" have names and (no) positions such as "Dr.Eugen Axinte, Romanian," "Dr. Aknuas William, Australia," and the untraceable "Dr.Rao, P.hd, USA." But "IJERA is UGC Approved Journal" that "aims to cover the scientific research in a broader sense and not publishing a niche area of research facilitating researchers from various verticals to publish their papers." Moreover, it is "for the researchers to publish in a shorter of time, enabling them to continue further."
Some of IJERA claims

⊘ IJERA accepts only and only high qualities paper. Its Average acceptance publication percentage is 26.09 %
⊘ IJERA is non profit non loss organization.
⊘ Review process takes only 4-6 days because of IJERA strong peer review team.
⊘ IJERA Conferred with “Outstanding Engineering Journal” Award by Jour Rank on 11th December 2011.
⊘ IJERA Publishes only and only quality papers.
⊘ IJERA secured maximum score 11.66 by Science Central march 2012 report.
⊘ IJERA is index in world top indexing database like Nasa Ads, ArXiv.org, ANED (American National Engineering Database), NCBI (US National Library).
In addition to these bizarre claims, the journal maintains that it is affiliated with Harvard, Cornell, and other universities. It proudly displays the logo of the National Library of Medicine's National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) on its website. The logo is ironic, considering that National Library of Medicine (NLM) excludes the journal from the NLM collection and the Medline index.

Speedy publication free from the various verticals is a promise that IJERA keeps. Researchers working with ZBW Mediatalk used the random paper generator, SCIgen, to fabricate a paper, “Decoupling IPv7 from the Transistor in Operating Systems.” IJERA accepted the garbage within 24 hours. The "strong peer review team['s]" assessment took the following form (in the "Reviewers Comments"):
1. Briefly, they have gone through your article, it was good.
2. No comments in peer review side.
Payment to the State Bank of India would guarantee publication.

Although the website behind this "outstanding journal" has no contact information other than gmail, the individual name behind the domain name ijera.com is Chetan Sharma (presumably not the former Indian cricketer and politician). The same name (sometimes in the url chetan.journals@gmail.com) is associated with domain names for other flaky journals such as American Journal of Engineering Research (AJER) and International Organization of Scientific Research (IOSR) Publishing.
Email
  • From: add paper [entary56data@all.bg]
    Date: Thu 2/20/2020 12:50 AM
    But Subject: Author Articles
    IJERA JOURNAL
    Dear Researcher,
    International Journal of Engineering Research and Applications (IJERA) is an open access and peer reviewed refereed international Journal. More than 3100 IJERA published articles are indexed in DOAJ
    International Journal of Engineering Research and Applications (IJERA) provides certificate free of cost to all author after publication paper.
    Impact Factor of IJERA: 5.179
    INDEXING : NASA Ads, ArXiv, ANED (American National Engineering Database), EBSCO Host, Cabell’s Directory, DOAJ, NCBI (US National Library) etc.
    Call For Paper: Important Dates
    Last date for paper submission: 25th February 2020 Acceptance Notification: Within 4-6 days Publication Date: 05th March 2020 ...
    EMAIL ID - ijera.submit@rediffmail.com
    Regards
    Editor-In-Chief
    International Journal of Engineering Research and Applications
    --
    ALL.BG Mail

Saturday, February 15, 2020

Raft Publications "aspire to publish"

Janine Paynter, a Research Fellow at the University of Auckland, called my attention to Raft Publications. Raft's motto is "reciprocal approach for transformation." The About Us page explains Raft's vision in these terms: "To asset international benchmark by encouraging distinguished research work, through use our best technology, resources and our dedication to research community." In addition, the Our Journals page explains that "RAFT publications aspire to publish manuscripts ... with 40+ international peer reviewed journals. ... Our passion ... droves us to publish our journals through open access mode ... ."

Raft accurately remarks that "We accept all types of manuscripts ... ." Janine notes that Raft's content includes papers "such as 'Prostate cancer cured in a week by machine without side effects.'"

The address for the US editorial office (19645 N 31st Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85027) seems to be an apartment house in Arizona. A tenant wrote to Yelp that "I have paper towels in the cracks and towels on the bottom of the doors to keep the bees out. ...Please look else where before coming here!!!! ... HORRIBLE! Zero care for their residents. Do not put your child at risk." Oddly, Raft's phone number for "any queries" has a San Diego prefix (+1 858 376 7260). The domain was registered by Contact Privacy, Inc., of Canada. Searching Google for the website returns the following blurb after the domain name: "Country: Iran, Islamic Republic of. You can also send us an email ... ."

Thursday, December 26, 2019

From Science PG's Science Journal of Education

A discussion of SciencePG and several of its journals is in a posting from January 2017. The following email is from its Science Journal of Education:
  • From: J Editor [editor@cnnjournal.org]
    Date: December 25, 2019 10:29 PM ET
    Subject: Dear Kaye, DH: A Special Issue: A Collection of Ideas in the Field of Special education
    Dear Kaye, DH, Greetings. The special issue named Inclusion of People with Intellectual Disabilities in Laboral Activities: A Work Customization Program under Science Journal of Education was proposed with the joint efforts of the lead guest editor Annie Redig and guest editors. This is a good open platform for the academic community to disseminate research achievements and accomplishments. With this special issue, they intend to bring academic peers together to exchange and share their academic experience and research findings on all aspects of Special education. As a member of the academic community, if you have any new discovery, be sure to convey your ideas and experiences to more academic peers. Your dedication will have significant meaning to the scientific community.
    Submit Your Article
    New insights as well as basic research and analysis on the topics below are welcome. Some of the topics of interest are: Laboral Activities ... .
    Deadline for contribution: November 25, 2019.[← Submitting on time will require time travel] ... We expect to receive your submission. [← Not very likely]
    Yours cordially,
    Amelia Ford