Wikipedia talk:WikiProject Academic Journals

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Journal drafts (2019-07-22)Edit

An easy way to get involved at AFC and review relevant drafts is to go at Template:Infobox journal, and inspect the 'what links here', filtered by namespace (select 'Draft').

This reveals the following

Help reviewing them would be great. Feel free to mark as  Y/ Y/ N/  for Accepted/Has potential/No potential/TBD. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 10:53, 22 July 2019 (UTC)

  • Most of those I already had on my watch list, I've added those that weren't included, too. My own strategy is to go to Special:NewPages, limit to draft space, and search for the words "journal" and "magazine". For many of those drafts it's just waiting until they're G13 eligible, as they are far from notable. But the above list has several that are listed in Scopus or even have an IF and therefore clearly meet NJournals and were nevertheless rejected by editors who obviously had no idea about how to handle academic journal articles. Still, none of them was ready and all needed lots of work to become an acceptable article. When I've time, I'll have a closer look at those that are notable. --Randykitty (talk) 11:26, 22 July 2019 (UTC)
I've marked my assessment of where things stand. Red ones are hopeless IMO. Yellow ones have at least some merit, and could probably be merged somewhere if not accepted. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 13:04, 22 July 2019 (UTC)
Journals indexed in Scopus may be more likely to be predatory (by some measure) than the average, so that's hardly a significant criterion. High impact factor also tends to correlated with low academic quality. Nemo 16:16, 22 July 2019 (UTC)
The main difference is likely the inclusion of Hindawi, Frontiers Media and MDPI journal in Scopus. Together, those are 413 journals that would be deemed 'predatory' by thinking Beall = Predatory, rather than Beall = Questionable. This does show Scopus to be somewhat less selective than WoS, but these three borderline publishers are more questionable than predatory. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 16:48, 22 July 2019 (UTC)
Nope. These three were not the culprits in that one study. Inclusion in Scopus or WoS just gives no information whatsoever, I advise against considering it for anything other than a sign that the publisher cares about international promotion. Nemo 17:40, 22 July 2019 (UTC)

Out of 7,000 journals in Beall’s List

  • 248 in Scopus
  • 14 in WoS

Out of 599 journals in our sample

  • 131 in Scopus
  • 10 in WoS"

Given no information is given about which journals those are, and that these are comparable to the numbers I get from including Frontiers/Hindawi/MDPI (they had fewer journals back in 2012), I don't see how you can say those 248 journals aren't the MDPI/Hindawi/Frontiers one. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 19:25, 22 July 2019 (UTC)

I do not consider it the case that all journals that have appeared in that list are necessarily predatory. A good number of them are apparently journals which the publisher started on the optimistic position that if they made the title available, papers would eventually come. (A good conventional publisher makes very sure that they have a considerable number of papers available --usually from the editorial board and their students) before they publish the first issue, because they need to convince people to subscribe.) This has to be distinguished from the true parasitic publishers who start titles they know very well will never develop, (or where they are too ignorant to be able to tell such things) and don't particularly care.
Scopus does discriminate in which of these titles it includes. I tend to consider their choices rational, and I still would accept being indexed in there as a reasonable standard. DGG ( talk ) 19:04, 23 August 2019 (UTC)
Indeed Beall isn't perfect, but the bigger mistake people make with Beall's list is to assume that the list provides a yes/no assessment of predatoriness, rather than a yes/no assessment of "reader/writer beware". Beall did not distinguish between 100% predatory and fishy/questionable/low quality. Frontiers/MDPI journals are mostly terrible, and you wouldn't catch me dead publishing in them. But at the same time, you can't dismiss a study purely because it's in Frontiers/MDPI, unlike something published in a SCIRP/OMICS journal which are universally terrible. Knowing it was in Frontiers/MDPI would have me triple check it before citing them, and only as a last resort. But I wouldn't blacklist them by any stretch. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 19:52, 23 August 2019 (UTC)
It's not my experience that MDPI journals are mostly terrible, while for instance I keep finding horrifying crap published by Elsevier. Of course all publishers make mistakes, but problems with MDPI are largely a myth. We need to be evidence-based, see Nemo 13:00, 5 December 2019 (UTC)
Clearly you have never read Entropy (journal). See also [1]. They're not universally useless, but it's a very dodgy venue. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 13:22, 5 December 2019 (UTC)

Automatic short descriptionEdit

Is there a way that {{Infobox journal}} could be modified to automatically generate a short description in the same way that, for example, {{Infobox album}} does? Pinging Headbomb. IntoThinAir (talk) 18:27, 7 October 2019 (UTC)

@IntoThinAir: Probably. I just don't know what should go in a short description, so if you have examples, or a general structure for them, feel free to elaborate. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 18:33, 7 October 2019 (UTC)

ISO-4 abbreviation language rulesEdit

I realized I may have been interpreting the rules wrong all along. The ISO-4 standard (pdf) for abbreviating journal titles relies on the LTWA (List of Title Word Abbreviations). The list has a column "Lang.", which contains one ore more languages, often including "mul" for "Multiple languages". I thought the intention was that rules should only be applied to titles in those languages, but that doesn't follow from the standard! I now believe all rules should always be applied, regardless of what the "Lang." column contains (it only serves as an indication of where the rule came from, i.e. what meaning was intended, or which ISSN National Centre produced it). Some arguments:

  • The ISO-4 document includes an example of an "appended article": bibliotek = bibl. and biblioteket = bibl.. The LTWA includes a rule bibliotek- bibl. lit,rus, but biblioteket is Swedish. So unless this LTWA entry changed, they intended the rule to apply to Swedish as well.
  • We have a fairly representative list of examples where the two methods differ. For _none_ of them I can think of a reason to abbreviate a word in Spanish, say, and not in English. For most of them not abbreviating according to all rules looks like nonsense. In particular I now believe words like 'atmosphere', 'documents', 'critique', 'contributions', 'biblical' should be abbreviated in English titles, despite the rules being spa only.
  • One example I know were the rules explicitly differ is real (actual) n.a. fre,eng vs real (royal) r. spa. But they have those parentheticals which suggest that they should be distinguished by meaning, not by language ("real" can mean either "real/actual" or "royal" in Spanish).

If you agree I'll fix instructions and defaults at abbrevIso and I'll update the mismatch lists so that I can start fixing all affected infoboxes (possibly around ~300 out of 8500). Sorry for not realizing that earlier. Tokenzero (talk) 13:13, 20 October 2019 (UTC)

@Tokenzero: That's very possible we've been misinterpreting the rules indeed. I wonder if there's a way of contacting LTWA. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 07:37, 31 October 2019 (UTC)
@Tokenzero: Maybe try sending them an email / calling them? Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 07:40, 31 October 2019 (UTC)
I sent them an email and got a short reply that indeed, the language column only indicates the provenance of a word. I have a list of ~300 abbreviations to fix, I'll try to do that in a semi-automated way soon. Tokenzero (talk) 12:22, 20 November 2019 (UTC)

Request for information on WP1.0 web toolEdit

Hello and greetings from the maintainers of the WP 1.0 Bot! As you may or may not know, we are currently involved in an overhaul of the bot, in order to make it more modern and maintainable. As part of this process, we will be rewriting the web tool that is part of the project. You might have noticed this tool if you click through the links on the project assessment summary tables.

We'd like to collect information on how the current tool is used! How do you yourself and the other maintainers of your project use the web tool? Which of its features do you need? How frequently do you use these features? And what features is the tool missing that would be useful to you? We have collected all of these questions at this Google form where you can leave your response. Walkerma (talk) 04:23, 27 October 2019 (UTC)

Beall's (new) list is possibly downEdit

I added a link to Web Archive to the article for those who are looking for it. WP:CITEWATCH and WP:CITEWATCH/SETUP have been updated to point to the archived pages when available. The publisher/journal/hijacked lists were archived, but it seems the vanity press page was not. Or at least I can't find an archived version of it.

This would really suck if the updated list was permanently down, rather than a temporary hiccup. This happened in the last few hours. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 14:45, 30 November 2019 (UTC)

It's fine to reference archived versions from pages discussing the list itself, but for other purposes it's better to just stop using a discontinued and outdated resource. It's like checking the weather on last year's newspapers before deciding whether to go out with an umbrella. Nemo 14:52, 30 November 2019 (UTC)
There's no other source that remotely compares to Beall's list. As long as any statement is dated 'appeared on Beall's list before it was taken down in 2017', it's fine to use as a source for the fact that a publisher was listed on Beall's list. Also a great resource to fight predatory citations in general, both in and off Wikipedia, provided you don't leave your brain at the door and assume the list is perfect, and remember that some of those listed will merely be questionable rather than predatory. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 14:59, 30 November 2019 (UTC)
Maybe. The DOAJ is a work in progress but it's already more comprehensive (in terms of journals and publishers examined, whether included or rejected) and way more systematic. It's also easier to check, for instance you can programmatically query the Unpaywall API to know whether a specific DOI was published in a DOAJ-listed journal or not. (At least for publishers using CrossRef.) Nemo 18:25, 30 November 2019 (UTC)
Blacklists are better than whitelists when it comes to hunting down crap. Something absent from DOAJ could mean it's crap, but it could also mean they just never bothered to apply for inclusion in DOAJ, or that the journal is too new for it, or a million other reasons that don't imply crapness, the chief reason being simply that the journal isn't open access. Access to Cabell's list would be fantastic, but it's also prohibitively paywalled. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 19:08, 30 November 2019 (UTC)
We also have the Nordic lists on Wikidata, by the way. I have little hope that Cabell's list will be any better than what we had before: the first studies published about it did not find it performed spectacularly better than anything else, and being paywalled means it avoids wide scrutiny.
Yes, thousands of OA journals have not yet applied to DOAJ, and what's worse DOAJ doesn't examine closed-access journals, many of which are predatory; but then, thousands if not millions of book publishers, news publishers and websites are used in references without ever having been examined by a committee. In short, there's plenty of work to do, and it's ok to do what we can, there will always be more... Nemo 09:36, 1 December 2019 (UTC)
Never heard of closed access journals (I assume that subscription journals are meant) being referred to as "predatory". As for the Nordic lists, Norway has a small population and while its universities are generally of a very high quality, it is important to note that, given the size of the academic communities there, these lists are compiled by very few people. --Randykitty (talk) 13:23, 1 December 2019 (UTC)
DOAJ is specifically concerned with open access journals. Predatory publishing is a feature of open access publishing because of the author pays model, which incentivizes lax reviewing standards. Closed access journals are subscription based, which incentivizes proper peer review, so predatoriness, as the term is generally understood, is not something that you have to worry about in subscription journals. Subscription journals can still have problems, but they will be of a different nature. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 13:31, 1 December 2019 (UTC)
I've known some subscription journals with remarkably low standards of peer review. I've also known quite a few that I would class as predatory--with the victims not being the authors who thought they were paying for an article in a journal that would be rejected, but the libraries and universities that paid the subscription--and subscriptions are always paid in advance), sometimes for "volumes" that would be published as single issues, or even that would never be published at all. I should look to see what we say in the articles on some of them. DGG ( talk ) 21:28, 6 December 2019 (UTC)
Just FYI, I have found one page (but no more) on the weebly Beall's list site that is currently still live: [2]. IntoThinAir (talk) 00:52, 7 December 2019 (UTC)
If it's really gone, that's too bad. I saved local copies of publisher/journal for my own use in case of this sort of eventuality but didn't bother with hijacked/vanity, so unfortunately I can't help in any recovery efforts. —David Eppstein (talk) 02:58, 7 December 2019 (UTC)

There's a Google cache version that lists the following as vanity presses:

XOR'easter (talk) 20:42, 8 December 2019 (UTC)

It's back up now! Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 18:45, 10 December 2019 (UTC)

And apparently we should replace the weebly link with a link to the "more permanent" URL IntoThinAir (talk) 18:54, 10 December 2019 (UTC)

FYI, Nature's criteria for "predatory journals" clearly apply to Elsevier. Nemo 15:10, 11 December 2019 (UTC)

It clearly doesn't. But sure, keep twisting things to suit your viewpoints. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 15:13, 11 December 2019 (UTC)
Indeed, what nonsense. I don't recognize Elsevier in this either. --Randykitty (talk) 15:34, 11 December 2019 (UTC)

Journal of Asian and African Studies helpEdit

@DGG: on this one. Background

From the Sage website, it seems like Sage acquired Journal of Asian and African Studies in 2002, and continued publishing it under the same name.

From the Brill website, it seems like Brill published Journal of Asian and African Studies until 2001, then it renamed it Asian and African Studies and continued publishing it under a different name since 2002.

WTF is going on here. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 11:49, 6 December 2019 (UTC)

Sadly only has data from 2013.
When journals are transferred, the original publisher often retains some rights over the archive. Maybe they have agreed to use a different name in following years to reduce "confusion"? Nemo 13:00, 6 December 2019 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Caucasian JournalEdit

This AfD just was relisted for a second time, but apart from the nom there are no other !votes. Interested editors are invited to give their opinions. --Randykitty (talk) 08:50, 12 December 2019 (UTC)

Wikipedia:Categories for discussion/Log/2020 January 2#Bunch of journal/magazine people categoriesEdit

Please comment at the above link. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 18:47, 2 January 2020 (UTC)


Thanks to the efforts of JLaTondre, we now have a new section to our WP:JCW compilation: Journals organized by DOI prefixes. The gist of it is that to each DOI prefix corresponds a publisher/imprint, so this (more or less) organizes our cited journals by those publishers/imprints. Note that a publisher may have multiple DOI prefixes associated with it.

The compilation will be particularly useful to gnomes that like to make sure the correct journals are cited, or those that want to make sure that specific publishers/imprints are covered adequately on Wikipedia. For example, 10.1073 covers PNAS, but you will notice many entries aren't actually PNAS. Those can then be cleaned up to either use the correct DOI (if |doi=10.1073/... is incorrect), or the correct journal (if |journal=Not PNAS is incorrect).

Cheers. If you have questions, feel free to ask! Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 07:49, 27 January 2020 (UTC)

@Daniel Mietchen: you might be interest in this in particular. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 20:17, 29 January 2020 (UTC)
Nice indeed — thanks! -- Daniel Mietchen (talk) 10:28, 30 January 2020 (UTC)

Using Template:ISSN link for ISSN links in List of entomology journalsEdit

What section title says basically. The List of entomology journals page uses a lot of ISSN links using the Template:ISSN template, especially when there are both print/online versions. Having learned recently that Template:ISSN link exists, I was wondering if it'd be okay to switch to using that template instead or not. I tried asking at the list page's talk page but got no response, so I've taken the question here instead. Monster Iestyn (talk) 13:45, 2 February 2020 (UTC)

Eh nevermind, maybe I should just be WP:BOLD and do it anyway, at this rate. Monster Iestyn (talk) 01:52, 4 February 2020 (UTC)

Montana magazine styling disputeEdit

Please comment at Talk:Montana (magazine). Thanks. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 22:26, 3 February 2020 (UTC)

Physics (1964–1968)Edit

I posted an inquiry over at WikiProject Physics and am cross-listing it here. Cheers, XOR'easter (talk) 19:03, 10 February 2020 (UTC)

Script to detect unreliable sourcesEdit

I have (with the help of others) made a small user script to detect and highlight various links to unreliable sources and predatory journals. The idea is that it takes something like

  • John Smith "Article of things" Accessed 2020-02-14. (John Smith "[ Article of things]" ''''. Accessed 2020-02-14.)

and turns it into something like

It will work on a variety of links, including those from {{cite web}}, {{cite journal}} and {{doi}}.

The script is new, and I'm still expanding coverage and tweaking logic, but what's there already works very well. Details and instructions are available at User:Headbomb/unreliable. Questions, comments and requests can be made at User talk:Headbomb/unreliable. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 09:26, 14 February 2020 (UTC)

@Randykitty, IntoThinAir, XOR'easter, Daniel Mietchen, and Ocaasi: since this seems up your alley. Headbomb {t · c · p · b} 17:30, 16 February 2020 (UTC)

European Journal of Paediatric NeurologyEdit

I created an article on the European Journal of Paediatric Neurology. I think it's notable. Eastmain (talkcontribs) 23:27, 16 February 2020 (UTC)

Wikimedia Project Grant Proposal on *Disinformation*Edit

I'm proposing a Wikimedia Foundation Project Grant to study *disinformation* and provide actionable insights and recommendations.

Please check it out and endorse it if you support it.


Cheers! -Jake Ocaasi t | c 20:04, 19 February 2020 (UTC)

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