Predatory Open Access in Rehabilitation
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Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 98 (5): 1051 - 1056 (2017)

Increasingly scholars and researchers are being solicited by predatory open access journals seeking manuscript submissions and abusing the author-pays model by charging authors with publishing fees without any or proper peer review. Such questionable editorial practices are threatening the reputation and credibility of scholarly publishing. To date, no investigation has been conducted on this phenomenon in the field of rehabilitation. This study attempts to identify specific predatory journals operating in this field to quantify the phenomenon and its geographic distribution. Beall's List has been used to this end which, although not perfect, is a comprehensive and up-to-date report of predatory publishers. Of the 1113 publishers on the list, 59 journals were identified, for a total of 5610 published articles. The median number of articles published by each journal was 21, and the median amount of article processing charges was $499. Only 1 out of 59 journals was included in the Directory of Open Access Journals, whereas 7 (12%) were indexed by PubMed. Most of the publishers were based in India (36%) followed by the United States (25%) and Pakistan (5%), and 25% were without a verifiable address. The data indicate that the threat of predatory publishing in rehabilitation is real. Physiatrists, physiotherapists, researchers, and academics operating in this field are advised to use the tools available to recognize predatory practices before considering publishing in open access journals.
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