Friday, January 20, 2017

Beall's List of Predatory Publishers Wiped Clean

The list of allegedly predatory publishers exploiting the opportunities for open access publishing previously maintained at, a.k.a. Beall's list, is no more. The blog is devoid of content. Clicking on the "list of publishers" produces the remark, "This service is no longer available." The reasons for the abrupt erasure are not publicly known.
“My blog is now unpublished,” said [Jeffrey] Beall, an academic librarian at the University of Colorado, Denver (UCD). He added that he couldn’t give reasons and declined to comment further.
Andrew Silver, Controversial Website that Lists ‘Predatory’ Publishers Shuts Down, Nature, Jan. 18, 2017. Science magazine calls it a mystery. Dalmeet Singh Chawla, Mystery As Controversial List of Predatory Publishers Disappears, Science, Jan. 17, 2017.

An archived version of the old list can be accessed at


From Nature News (Dalmeet Singh Chawla, The Undercover Academic Keeping Tabs on ‘Predatory’ Publishing, Mar. 16, 2018:
When librarian Jeffrey Beall shut down his controversial blog listing potentially ‘predatory’ scholarly publishers and journals last year, archived copies swiftly appeared elsewhere online. More than a year later, at least one of these copycat blacklists is still growing — maintained by an anonymous website manager who says that they spend hours each weekend working on the list. ... [T]he site manager ... identified themseves [sic] as a senior research assistant in the hard sciences at a European institution. The site’s keeper corresponded with Nature by e-mail and declined to provide any further details of their identity, citing fear of harassment. ...

The manager now spends four to six hours each weekend replying to ... questions [mostly] from academics concerned about publishing in a particular journal. Sometimes, academics flag up what they believe to be a questionable journal, occasionally alleging that their research or identity has been stolen by a predatory publisher, the site’s moderator says. ... By March 2018, the new site had added 85 stand-alone journals and 27 publishers to Beall’s original lists of more than one thousand titles.

Another site called Stop Predatory Journals, also came online in January last year. It is run by a group that, according to the website, consists of scholars and information professionals who decided to “rebuild and resurrect” Beall’s list hoping to create a community-based approach to curation. But the site is not regularly updated, according to records on its GitHub repository, and has added no new journals, besides one whose publisher was already on Beall’s list. The group did not respond to Nature’s requests for comment. ... Last June, a scholarly-services firm called Cabell’s international in Beaumont, Texas, launched its own, pay-to-view blacklist of what it deems “deceptive” journals ... [A]round 200 institutions have subscribed ....

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