Journal: Publish here, and we’ll pay you $500

A new journal is offering something we’ve never seen before: A cash reward to corresponding authors of papers it publishes.

Normally, in the case of open-access journals, researchers have to pay article processing charges (APCs). But Minimally Invasive Surgical Oncology, an open-access journal launched at the end of last year, flips the typical narrative — it will pay corresponding authors $500 for every original or review article it accepts. If any author joins the editorial board, the payment — which the journal dubs “royalties” — increases to $600.

Editor Wenyuan Chen admitted it’s an unusual policy:

To our knowledge, it is rare for technical journals to pay royalties to authors.

Chen told us the journal has so far paid approximately $7200 to authors since the royalty program launched in January 2017:

Although it is a new journal, [Minimally Invasive Surgical Oncology, or MISO] adheres to the principle that the quality of its articles cannot be compromised. Quality manuscripts being scarce, the editorial board solicits manuscripts from well-known scholars and pays them honoraria in appreciation of their efforts. Currently, we have solicited some manuscripts whose authors have published original or review articles in journals indexed by MEDLINE, and some authors have published original or review articles in high-impact journals.

Here’s a link to the royalty page, which says:

For each accepted original or review article, Minimally Invasive Surgical Oncology pays $500 in royalties to the corresponding author If any of the authors of an accepted original or review article is willing to become a member of our editorial board, the royalties will be increased to $600. The royalties can be paid through various channels, including bank transfer (card and account), or PayPal.

The journal is open access, and the “instructions to authors” page says it does not charge fees:

The journal does not charge either authors or their institutions for the submission, processing, or publication of articles.

Chen told us how the journal funds itself:

The Journal is established by three co-founders who are all doctors. The co-founders are planning to donate 30% of their own wages as the payment on account to start operation, and manage to gain influence to attract medical instrument manufacturers on minimally invasive surgery to advertise on it to go forward eternally. And of course, the manufacturers have no rights to interfere with the scholarly publishing matters.

The bottom of the site includes the logos of Elsevier, Google, Wiley, PubMed, and Embase; Chen told us:

The website contains the logos of Elsevier, Google, and other well-known websites in hopes of being linked to them. We access these websites frequently.

Hat tip: Khalid El Bairi

Like Retraction Watch? Consider making a tax-deductible contribution to support our growth. You can also follow us on Twitter, like us on Facebook, add us to your RSS reader, sign up on our homepage for an email every time there’s a new post, or subscribe to our daily digest. Click here to review our Comments Policy. For a sneak peek at what we’re working on, click here. If you have comments or feedback, you can reach us at

9 thoughts on “Journal: Publish here, and we’ll pay you $500”

  1. MALPRACTICE PLAINTIFF ATTORNEY: Did you receive any monetary compensation to publish your paper “Minimally invasive surgical oncology is the wave of the future”?

    EXPERT DEFENSE WITNESS: Yes. I received $500 in royalties.

  2. The increase in the payment if you join the editorial board stands out as odd to me. I’d fear establishment of a mutual back-scratching society among the editors, publishing each others’ papers for profit.

    Also, wow, they are soliciting authors? How does anyone successfully solicit authors anymore? I get something like 2-5 requests to publish in a given journal EVERY DAY, and I discard all of them. Are they relying on soliciting people whom they know personally?

  3. Articles here might be free to read now, but that is not necessarily the case going forward. The journal explicitly requires all rights to be transferred to them – this is not CC licensed open access publishing, it’s just free until those doctors decide otherwise.

    From the instructions to authors:

    “All rights for the submitted article will be transferred and assigned to Hong Kong Medical Publishing Corporation Limited for the sole right to print, publish, distribute, and sell in all languages and media internationally. The transfer of copyright is deemed effective when the submitted article is accepted for publication. “

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.