Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Another brilliant piece of science spam

Lately I get the feeling that, on average, scientific spam trolling for paper submissions to poor quality, for-profit journals gets somewhat sleeker and more professional looking. And perhaps I have now blocked so many of these spammers that I get less of the really obvious ones.

But sometimes a real howler still gets through. Look at this beauty:

Some stats: three different fonts; four different font colours; and hard to tell but probably at least three different font sizes in the main text. It should be hard to produce something that unprofessional by accident but somehow they managed. I mean, do these spammers not look at the correspondence of real scientific journals to get a feel for what they need to copy?

Then, the text itself.
Esteemed Professor//Scientist/Researcher/Faculty,
Yes, that covers everything... except coming across as a serious journal.
The "International Journal of Life Sciences Biotechnology and Pharma Research" (IJLBPR) is an Internationally indexed journal in English, published Quarterly. The aim of IJLBPR is to publish peer reviewed research and review articles in the fields of Life Sciences, Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Sciences. This journal is available at
The name! Jesus Christ on a pogo stick, the name! Also, why are internationally and quarterly capitalised?
The journal has indexed in Benha University Egypt, ELSEVIER, Index Copernicus USA, Chemical Abstract Services (CAS) USA, Proquest USA, Universe Digital Libraries (UDL) Malaysia, Scirus Scientific Information (owned and operated by Elsevier) Netherlands, HINARI (WHO) Switzerland, Research BIB Japan, Academic Resources Japan, New Jour Washington, Libraries Direcotry UAE, Exlibris USA, Ulrich's Web Washington, Genamics New Zealand, Open J-Gate, Indian etc.
I have never heard of the vast majority of these except Elsevier and Index Copernicus. No idea what it means to "be indexed" in a publishing company, but surely IJLBPR is not published by Elsevier. And Index Copernicus has sometimes come under criticism. Also, grammar.
We process your manuscript rapidly without any delay. We give the acceptance within one week from the date of submission of your manuscript and will complete the process of publication within a month.
Conspicuously absent: peer review, or the possibility that an article doesn't get accepted because it is too low quality. Also, any indication of how high the article processing fee is going to be.
In this Journal we wish to publish original scientific papers, literature reviews and professional papers, as well as short reviews of the new books and scientific meetings in the fields of Life Sciences, Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Sciences.
I guess this means "everything, as long as you pay us a fee". Can anybody tell me what the difference is between a scientific paper and a professional paper?
We therefore invite you to contribute articles to our journal for forthcoming issue under the discipline Life Sciences, Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Sciences and all related areas to make our endeavor a success.
Sorry but no.
Your articles may be mailed to or
A gmail account, sounds legit.
You may also share this information with your colleagues.
That is very nice but I'd rather not. Well, except to point and laugh.

Note also the list of subjects covered by the (begin really slow air quote) journal (end really slow air quote). It is cut off in the screen shot above but I counted 46 fields of research that they hope to harvest publication fees from. The meandering column layout is a particularly nice touch; it appears the spammer hasn't figured out how to make a table without using spacers.


  1. I know, right!? I get dozens of these and *not one* has ever been well enough written, presented or copy edited for me to even consider falling for it. But presumably enough people do or it wouldn't work as a business? Maybe these enterprises fail rapidly, or (worryingly) there are enough scientists (presumably trained and doing research!) handing over the money. Are there maybe people out there who know these are fly-by-night journals but don't care and just want to get their papers published? Maybe even papers they know are poor...

    - a quarterly journal that guarantees publication within one month...?
    - Jeff Beall (U Colorado) keeps a running list of what he considers predatory journals. I wonder whether his list could be used to make a handy spam filter...

  2. ah, link to Jeff's website:

  3. Thanks, but you will already see a link to that website on my side bar!