Starting to get bored of stings designed to expose the well-documented flaws in scientific publishing? Yeah, sometimes we are too. But another one just came across our desks, and we couldn’t help ourselves.
John McCool is neither a researcher nor a urologist. When received an unsolicited invitation to submit a paper to an open-access urology journal, however, he just couldn’t resist: He is the owner of a freelance scientific editing company, and has long been concerned about so-called predatory journals, which often publish sub-par papers as long as authors pay. And he loves the TV show “Seinfeld.”
Like many others before him, McCool decided to punk the journal by submitting a fake paper. He told us: