Please do not publish my thesis


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I received a few of these emails, from scholars’ press and others, offering me a chance to publish my thesis (which anyone can find online for free in its entirety, if they so desire). Today I decided to reply.

The email I got:

Dear Eva Amsen,

As stated by the University of Toronto’s electronic repository, you authored the work about Studies of proteins that regulate melanin synthesis and distribution . in the framework of your postgraduate degree.

Due to the fact that we are currently planning publications in this subject field, we would be pleased to know whether you would be interested in publishing the above mentioned work with us.

Scholars’ Press Publishing is a member of an international publishing group, which has almost 10 years of experience in the publication of high-quality research works from well-known institutions across the globe.

Besides producing printed scientific books, we also market them actively through more than 80,000 booksellers.

Kindly confirm your interest in receiving more detailed information in this respect.

I am looking forward to hearing from you.

Best regards,

Gemma Leighton
Acquisition Editor

(Please note: I decided to leave Gemma’s name in because I’m convinced she’s a sockpuppet, as per a Facebook profile of her, set up just a few weeks ago.)




And below is my response. Yes, I did send this, links and all.

Dear Gemma,

It’s great to hear that you’re interested in the subcellular regulation of melanin synthesis and distribution. It’s a very specific field, and not exactly one that I would think a bookseller would be interested in – let alone 80,000 booksellers!

But even if you were to sell it, I can’t understand why anyone would purchase it: You found my thesis in the University of Toronto’s free repository. UofT has made it standard practice to encourage all outgoing graduate students to deposit their thesis so it’s accessible for anyone  to find. There is no need to print it and sell it – it’s free.

Furthermore, the content of my thesis has also been published in two manuscripts, one in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, where it is freely available online, and another that was deposited in the pre-print server Nature Preceedings. I am certain that anyone who is interested in the molecular biology of melanin synthesis pathways or the details of a failed methodology of studying melanosome transport via a high-content RNA-interference analysis has already found these free resources, and does not need them in a book.

Finally, I understand that publishing a thesis as a book might be appealing to some people wishing to add an additional (albeit redundant) publication to their name, and that it is profitable for you to sell such books to people who are not aware that the full content is freely available online. However, I have no interest in such a publication to promote my work.

If you had done a quick search of my name before emailing me, you could have discovered that I’m an active proponent of Open Science – the practice that encourages the open and free sharing of original scientific information online. In other words, I am not at all interested in selling my thesis as a book, because that goes against everything I stand for.

I did do a quick online search for your company, and found that you have been targeting the authors of many dissertations under a variety of different publisher names: Scholars’ Press, LAP LAMBERT and Omniscriptum all seem to be part of VDM Publishing, which has – a further search shows – also made profits of reselling Wikipedia articles as books.

In fact, the Wikipedia page for VDM Publishing points out that you “have received criticism for the soliciting of manuscripts from thousands of individuals, for providing non-notable authors with the appearance of a peer-reviewed publishing history, for benefiting from the free contributions of online volunteers, and for insufficiently disclosing the free nature of their content.”  If the latter is true, then publishing any of the dissertations that you have found on the University of Toronto’s repository would also violate their Creative Commons licences, as that is an explicit requirement of sharing the content of these works.

A further online search also revealed that your practices have already been spotted by Jeffrey Beal, as well as by several others who are keeping an eye out for young academics’ professional profiles. In fact, I will post this letter to my own blog as well, so that people doing a similar check on your company or on any of its many subsidiaries can see why I chose to decline your offer.

In summary, no, I am not interested in having you publish my freely deposited PhD thesis.

Sincerely,
Eva Amsen

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Eva

Eva Amsen is a writer, science communicator and blogger, interested in the overlap between science and music, art, pop culture, and daily life. Portfolio | Twitter | Contact

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99 Responses

  1. Eva Amsen says:

    No response, but I *did* get a similar email on another email address, less than a week later, from another sender. I sent them a link to this post.

    • Christian says:

      Thank you Eva, you saved me lot of time!

    • Ali says:

      I just received an identical email and immediately found it suspicious due to the style and content of the letter. I googled Scholars Press and found this blog entry. Thank YOU for exposing such scammers. And thank goodness I listened to my gut.

    • Krish says:

      Hi

      If your thesis is available online for free then Whats wrong in publishing with Scholars press. You are not going to loose anything write, in back you can add something to show in your CV. After publishing papers out of your thesis, there is nothing wrong in publishing as a book. Articles will be having limited data for free or paid but for students in books that will be available in detail.

      I do not find any mistake in that.

      Krish

      • Mdog says:

        Krish, I think you missed the point here.

        You ask: “whats wrong in publishing with Scholars press” – Eva has clearly stated at least three reasons in this blog post/letter.

      • Mubuku says:

        If you want to get your thesis ‘published’ so that you can buy some copies of your own thesis at a high price to give as gift to your friends and family members (just like what poetry.com does), this is a very good choice. For anything else, no.

        (Of course, they will also print your thesis and send to anyone who may purchase it from one of those ‘80,000 booksellers’, such as Amazon, online….print to order is the method here.)

    • Liyakat says:

      dear Eva,

      yesterday i recieved email with changed name/s.
      thanks so much for all your hard work.

      God Bless!!

  2. Mujtaba Zaka says:

    hi Eva,

    I recieved a similar email about publishing mythesis. many thanks for doing the research on scholars press, and highlighting their dubious nature.

  3. Ivan says:

    Wow, that is some seriously dedicated letter writing, and polite to boot! I just ignored their offer, but decided to google it to find what the scam was about, so thanks for posting your letter.

  4. Mari says:

    Hi Eva

    I also got the exact same letter, except with my name and thesis tile. Glad you contribute to making it easy for people to google this and figure out the scam. Thanks!

  5. Lydia Syson says:

    Just got an almost identical email via my fiction publisher – the sockpuppet had a different name. I thought it was worth replying and referred them to this blogpost, which I’ve also tweeted. Thank you so much for making the argument for everyone.

  6. Nicola says:

    Hi, thanks for posting this! I received a similar Email from “someone” named Krista Kennedy –
    Acquisition Editor for Scholars’ Press. I was suspicious of them and had heard stories in the past of publishing companies randomly targeting Doctors to “publish” their thesis. Thanks for making such a good post about it.

  7. siong says:

    thanks for thi article, this is exactly what i was suspicious about.

  8. Steffi says:

    thanks for posting this and making people aware of this scam! I received the same email two weeks ago and had simply ignored it, thinking they would now leave me alone. Strangely, today I received a reminder from them. They are annoyingly persistent, pestering people repeatedly. I will continue to ignore them. I paste their (reminder)-letter below so others are aware of their dubious techniques and don’t fall for this scam.

    (see their reminder belwow)

    ————————————————————————————————————————————–

    Dear …. ,

    We contacted you recently for a publication offer for your work.
    I did not receive any reply yet from you and I was wondering if you received my e-mail.
    I would be grateful if you could kindly confirm your interest in publishing your work. If you would like to receive more information about our publishing services, I would be pleased to send them to you.

    Here is a summary of our publication offer:

    – Free of Charge Publishing.
    Scholars’ Press offers publishing services at no cost to our privileged doctoral authors.

    – Earn Royalties.
    Authors earn yearly royalties according to the sales of their books.

    – Get a Free Copy.
    Authors and eventual co-authors have the possibility to receive free copies of their published book.

    – User Friendly Interface.
    We have an online platform where authors are able to participate in designing their book cover.

    – Print to Order Availability.
    Our books are permanently stored in a database and printed at any time in the demanded and ordered quantities.
    Print to Order is a high-quality, innovative and ecological printing method.

    – You receive additional free copies for recommending us new authors. You may choose either copies of your own book or any book from our portfolio. Check out our titles from http://www.amazon.com, http://www.amazon.co.uk and http://www.morebooks.de.

    – Unique ISBN.
    Every published book is assigned a unique ISBN code making it readily available throughout the world. Our book titles are then easily catalogued and distributed to the book wholesalers worldwide.

    – Discount on Book Purchases.
    Our authors are entitled to relevant discounts up to 40% for purchasing copies of their own books.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Best regards,
    Samantha Jackson
    Acquisition Editor

    Scholars’ Press is a trademark of OmniScriptum GmbH & Co. KG
    Heinrich-Böcking-Str. 6-8, 66121, Saarbrücken, Germany

    s.jackson (at) scholars-press. com / www. scholars-press. com

    Handelsregister Amtsgericht Saarbrücken HRA 10356
    Identification Number (Verkehrsnummer): 13955
    Partner with unlimited liability: VDM Management GmbH
    Handelsregister Amtsgericht Saarbrücken HRB 18918
    Managing director: Thorsten Ohm (CEO)
    ——————————————- END OF LETTER———————————————————————–

  9. fadhilah says:

    thank you for the post. i received the same email and decide to google about the company’s name.

  10. Brad says:

    I received a very similar email based on a journal article I wrote from my dissertation. Fortunately, your website and Beall’s list came up in the top 5 of my google search for Scholar’s Press.

    Amazing that these scammers have permeated their way into academia, but I guess it should not be a surprise. Thanks for the warning!

    • Mark says:

      Scholar’s Press is not on Beall’s list (last update 21 August 2014). I have know idea whether it should be or not.

      It does publish without cost to authors and it does try to market publications. Granted that it’s not Oxford University Press. But many recognised publishers put little or no effort into editing publications.

  11. April Conway says:

    I just had a similar email! from Scholar’s Press. I thought it was weird since my dissertation is accessible for free anyway. Their website looked suspect so I decided to google and found your blog. Thanks! So annoying about these scammers….

  12. RAINNY says:

    Thanks for the post, which saved me a lot of time! Really appreciate it.

  13. Paul Bernhardt says:

    I received one of these today. Great to so easily find that it is a completely bogus operation. Thanks for your work on this. It saved me time and doubt.

  14. Dr Georgy Downey says:

    HI — thanks so much for posting this. I was grappling with what to do as well upon receiving this ‘offer’ from LapPublishing.

    ta

    georgy

  15. Mandar M. Inamdar says:

    Thank you very much for this article. I received a similar email today from scholar’s-press, and thanks to this blog, I can safely neglect the same.

  16. roshya says:

    oh no
    I mailed them the soft copy of my project report
    and I just realized my mistake when I came across this page
    What do I do now??
    Am I in any kind of trouble?

    • srush says:

      I saw that you sent a soft copy – I do so also. Did anything bad come of it? Are we going to really regret this?
      Did you get any advice on what to do now?

  17. Thanks for this Eva. Received a similar offer from the same outfit this morning and, like one of your other readers, I googled and found your very helpful post.

  18. Sophia says:

    I have been receiving a number of emails from this Scholars Press organization. I thank you so much for taking the time to make us aware of this scam.

  19. L says:

    Thank you so much for posting this blog — I was so flattered by their initial e-mail, but it also seemed to be spam due to the way it was written. Your post helped me quickly make the right decision to avoid this publisher.

  20. Bo Weng says:

    Thanks Eva and thanks everybody who post here I received exactly the same email this morning and feel quite weired. Why they want to publish something that can be freely accessed. Then I can safely ignore this email and stop wast time on it.

  21. Miguel Caro says:

    Thanks for sharing. I must confess I was tempted to agree to publish my thesis, as “offered” by someone called Stefano Rossi, also from Scholar’s Press. I’m not considering it anymore. I have been in science for a very short time, but I’m already tired of how much scam you get, in particular from a lot of companies and organizations based in China. This one being German gave me for a second the impression of a genuine interest in my work.

    Thanks again,
    Miguel

  22. fava says:

    I just got my offer too, from “Elizabeth Parker” — Thanks for your post that confirms my suspicions.

    Dr Fava (thesis available online since Dec 2012)

  23. Madeleine says:

    Thanks a bunch!!! I thought the email trying to publish my dissertation was a little odd. All I did was google “Scholars’ Press” and your blog post came up 2nd!!

  24. Jordan says:

    Thanks for this informative blog post – you saved me a lot of time on receiving a similar email. I will reply with a link to this blog post. Much appreciated!

  25. Brandon says:

    Very helpful. Thanks! When I got the same email last night, I decided to write back as well and share (<a href="available here"(available here).

  26. Brandon says:

    Very helpful. Thanks! When I got the same email last night, I decided to write back as well and share (available here).

  27. Liz says:

    My email came from Ellie O’Connor, slightly more convincing email format, but… my dissertation is on the philosophy of art. Which is in high demand in the scientific community?

  28. Mara says:

    Thank you for posting this note. I have received various letters from different companies, but this was the most well-written, so I decided to see if my “fraud” suspicions were incorrect. Thanks for your service!

  29. A.R.H. says:

    Thank you for the info as well. I got solicited by Alex Green, Acquisition Editor of Scholar’s Press. I was directed to this website by my grad school department’s student service management team. It’s got SCAM written all over it.

  30. Monica Sleetef says:

    Great letter! I borrowed some of your language to reply to a similar request I got. I ignored initial request, then got a second pushy email. That’s when I googled and found your blog. Thank you for posting so eloquently. Don’t they realize they are targeting people that do research for a living???
    M. Sleeter
    Mothermorrigan.com

  31. ruth says:

    Like everybody else, I am very grateful to you. Same letter, name of Anaya James.
    The esoteric subject of my thesis made me suspicious of the offer, and I am very pleased that your link was so high on the list of links.

  32. Dave says:

    Cheers from Perth, Australia! Saved me some time from dealing with ‘Ray Walker’. P.S. I just couldn’t get my head around the absurd notion that anyone would be interested in reading my PhD thesis for free, let alone pay for it…

  33. Same story here. Thought the suggestion was a bit phishy.. Thanks for writing this 🙂

  34. Annalisa says:

    Got the exact same letter but from “Ray Walker” twice, once in Feb and once again this month, I guess since I didn’t respond to his first letter.

    • Conor says:

      ‘Ray Walker’ has tried to get my permission too, twice in this month. A quick search led me here and my suspicions have been verified. Thanks!

  35. Julie Heron says:

    Thank you I’m not even in science but rather my work is arts based. Luckily when I googled Scholars.com, your excellent blog came up second. Since I was already wondering, given the spelling of guarantee on their main page, your blog gave me all the additional info I needed to choose not to follow it up.

  36. Kate says:

    I received a similar letter from Elizabeth O’Connor, Acquisition Editor and thought it was a genuine offer. Then I decided to do some homework and found your blog which saved me. Thank you.

  37. Andrea Humphrey says:

    me, too. i just replied with the link to this page. thanks from me, too. i am about to FB your link.

  38. Rachel says:

    Very appreciative of this post as I have received two messages from the same person. Since it is freely available though copyrighted, there is not danger of this press taking my work and trying to pass it off on their own, right? So helpful of you to blog about it!

  39. L A G Senna says:

    Also received this same message, signed by a Helga Dabrovski.

  40. Jennifer says:

    Thanks for the information. I’m disappointed that this is a scam! I got an email from Anaya James, Acquisition Editor.

  41. Dr. Arik Greenberg says:

    Thank you so much for this, colleague! I received a similar letter a few weeks ago from their acquisitions editor, Amy Anderson, offering to re-publish my book, which was already published by Peter Lang in 2005 and is available on Amazon. Not knowing much about the industry, I continued to talk with her about it, aware that sometimes publishers will purchase and republish such works. She then indicated that since it was already published, they would not be interested in it after all. I challenged her, indicating my displeasure at her lack of transparency or her lack of awareness that the book she found on Amazon was indeed already published. She never replied to that challenge, but offered to look at other works (particularly articles) of mine. After sending a 44 page article that was distilled from the published monograph, she responded, “While reviewing your work, I wish to inform you that it looks more like a novel than an academic work. I am therefore sorry to inform you that we will not be able to proceed with the publication.” You don’t have to like my conclusions or my methods, but to claim that my academic work appears as a novel? That is outrageous.

    Up until finding your blog, I felt hurt and insulted. Now, I merely feel vindicated, but somewhat raw from having my time wasted.

    All my best to you honorable colleagues, fighting against scammers like these,
    Arik

  42. Krish says:

    Hi every one! If the thesis is freely available online or in journals. What’s wrong in it, publishing with them? Please explain. You will have a publication to show in your thesis.

    • Eva says:

      Hi Krish,
      Often the thesis is put online under a creative commons license (like mine was) which comes with certain guidelines that say what others can do with the work. It means at the very least, always having to refer back to the university repository where it was published, and these companies don’t seem to be doing that, so they’re breaking the rules that the university (the original publisher!) imposed on that work. They take the thesis and print it, and *if* people buy it, they take the profits. (Which again is often against the terms of the thesis repository).
      And you don’t really have another publication, because you already published your thesis! Having additional print copies of it through another company (who makes a profit off it) doesn’t add anything new to your CV.

  43. Riccardo Fassone says:

    In Italy they present themselves as “Edizioni Accademiche Italiane”. They asked for my doctoral dissertation and i could sense something quite dodgy. Seems like I was right. 🙂 Thanks for the post!

    rf

  44. Georg M. says:

    Since these people have no problem with sending unsolicited e-mails, let me point out a method to obtain an e-mail address that they actually read: Run a whois search, e.g.,

    http://www.networksolutions.com/whois/results.jsp?domain=scholars-press.com

    This will usually yield a personal e-mail address for your complaint.

  45. Thank you. I received the same email today.

  46. Patrick says:

    Thank you for this post! This saved me any further searching. I will delete that email immediately.

  47. Jo says:

    I got one of these today too, cynic radar went off, and a google search brought up your post. It saved me a lot of scratching about working out what their angle was, so many thanks! My Masters thesis advocates for Open Source as a model, so they clearly didn’t read it.

  48. Akhil says:

    Thanks Eva, for this blog. Hi to all research folks! Even I got an email close to this last day, regarding my dissertation work. Google search about the publishers brought me here. Now I know that I got to delete that email 🙂

  49. Dear Eva:

    Your blog is perfect. I fully agree with you. Although I got my thesis published through lambert but we all need to proofread the same as their peer reviewers are not going to proofread for you. So if you have any grammatical errors, they will publish that as well which will hamper the credibility of the author.

    [Ed. removed additional link – link is already in your name, and it got caught in spam filter now.]

  50. Mike says:

    Thanks so much for your article Eva. I’ve been emailed by LAP-Lambert and Scholar’s Press, and after initially being enthused at the prospect of “free” publication and being promoted to “80,000” bookstores, I came across your article, looked up VDM Publishing and realised it was way too good to be true. Thanks again.

  51. divya says:

    Thank you. I got a little excited when i got this email. Then my radar went off immediately and thanks to google and you, my day is back to its boring self. 🙂

  52. Gael says:

    Looks like they are on fire lately.
    Another suspicious publishing offer received here.
    Luckily your post is high-ranked in google, so people with a bit of curiosity can thoughtfully decline this dubious “win-win” offer.
    As you well said, not only the practice of this VDM publishing group is ethically questionable but it is ILLEGAL in the many cases where dissertations uploaded to academic repositories come with CC licenses.
    Thanks for taking the time for exposing this.

  53. AL says:

    Thank you Eva!

    In less than 24 hours after my dissertation was published and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License, the mercenary syndicate of piratical publishers, known as “Scholars’ Press OmniScriptum GmbH & Co. KG”, sent me an offer to ‘publish’ that which has already been published. The email was sent by “Nancy Elliot Acquisition Editor”.

    I recommend for everyone who receives a similar offer to rate the organization using ‘mywot.com’, for example, in order to warn others who may do a Google search of the company name. After a number of negative reviews, a ‘red donut’ will appear to the right of the Google link that has a pop-up window to warn people from even clicking on their website.

    Please take a few minutes to rate them and others like them, as this may be an effective way to prevent such unethical and illegal activity. Inspired by Eva, I am now ‘on the offensive’, and will be hunting these types of organizations and doing my part to take them down, starting with “Scholars’ Press OmniScriptum GmbH & Co. KG”.

  54. Louis Jones says:

    If this is like one other offer I received, there’s also the added issue of upfront money I’m sure Scholars’ Press requires in order to “publish” with them.

  55. sangri says:

    Hi everyone and thank you so much for your post, Eva! This week I received a similar email from a publisher called GlobeEdit, which is as I now found out, subsidary of VDM Publishing. They were interested in my BA thesis written for the Latvian Academy of Culture, on a topic that is probably relevant only locally. I answered them asking to explain how it works in more detail (their website, neat as it is, didn’t quite convince me if this is a real thing), but now I will certainly decline the offer and inform my friends in academia not to fall for them. I must admit that they were quite diligent in creating the illusion of seriousness – in contrast with other spam this e-mail was written in perfect Latvian, very polite and signed by someone with a believable Latvian name. So glad that I followed my hunch and googled to find more about this deal.

  56. Troy says:

    Thank you Eva! I received a similar email from Scholars Press. Your post saves me a lot of time. Thanks.

  57. Alan says:

    I’m a bit puzzled by all the vitriol in these comments. Scholars’ Press doesn’t ask for any money from the author and isn’t cheating anyone out of anything. It seems inaccurate and unfair to label their operation a “scam”. If people wish to purchase a bound copy of a document that is already freely available on the internet, what is the harm? The key fact that is being overlooked here is that on-demand publishing is now so inexpensive that only very small amounts of money are needed to prepare and distribute such books. If the publisher sells even a few dozen copies, it makes a profit. I am a professor at a university who has published well over 100 technical articles and a textbook with a well-known publisher. You people should just relax about Scholars’ Press; there is no crime or fraud being perpetrated.

  58. Ezequiel Luis Nicolazzi says:

    Thank you so much. Just got a suspiciously similar email from these guys. I googled this company and your post was a top hit. You saved me a lot of time, and I agree 100% with your reply.
    Thanks and greetings from Italy!
    ezequiel

  59. Thanks says:

    Thanks for the helpful post. I can safely ignore the e-mail I just received from them.

  60. Sam says:

    I got a very similar email from them, the email seemed very suspicious indeed so I googled the company name scholar’s press and found this blog! you saved a lot of time, thank you! It’s another scam to grab your money, just like Waset and Omics conferences.

  61. Nathan Joshua says:

    Thank you Eva for sharing this information with us, for it has made us cautious and wiser. On July 11 I received a similar request from someone by name Kenneth Reid from the address, “k.reid@scholars-press.com” requesting permission to publish my dissertation. Until now I have not responded or given my permission to the person, because I also suspected that the request was fraudulent. The sender described himself(?) as Acquisition Editor and provided the following details:

    Scholars’ Press is a trademark of OmniScriptum GmbH & Co. KG

    Heinrich-Böcking-Str. 6-8,
    66121, Saarbrücken, Germany

    k.reid (at) scholars-press. com
    www. scholars-press. com

    Handelsregister Amtsgericht Saarbrücken HRA 10356
    Identification Number (Verkehrsnummer): 13955
    Partner with unlimited liability: VDM Management GmbH
    Handelsregister Amtsgericht Saarbrücken HRB 18918
    Managing director: Thorsten Ohm (CEO)

  62. Joni Karjalainen says:

    Received an exactly similar e-mail from Mina Granger from Scholars’ Press, and will further assess what to do about it.

  63. Krista KS says:

    Hi, greetings from Latvia. These scammers have reached us operating under Company name Globe edit and have latvian representative to write emails.they Target even bachelors and masters works.

  64. Mary says:

    Why don’t you just read what they are offering?
    Obviously they are contacting authors worldwide and offer a publication. it might sometimes be ridiculous to publish a bachelor or master work.
    However hey it is for free, they have costs for ISBN and listing our books online on Amazon, BoD, etc but we do not have any costs.

    If you want to have some printed copies for family, friends, university, professors, etc. then you can order books at a reduced price.

    So nothing bad about it. might be sometimes unnecessary but for free and fun.

    Cheers
    Mary

    • Christoffer says:

      I too received an email similar to the one you got. It was from Emily Johnson of GlobeEdit. Thank you so much for clearing things up and doing all the research for me 🙂

      And to Mary, there is potential harm in publishing even though it does not cost anything. First, though I have not read the contract, there is a risk that you will sign off the rights to publish you own work elsewhere. In many cases that means that you cannot keep giving away your thesis to researchers whom actually are interested without buying one from the publisher.

      Second, publishing with a company that clearly shows bad ethics in publishing may hurt the credibility of your research. Thereby, it may in the long run keep other researchers from citing you. That would be devastating as spreading the research is one of the goals, at least for my kind of research.

      Anyway, thanks for a great post!

      Kind regards
      Christoffer from Sweden

  65. Mdog says:

    Hi Eva,

    I just received a very similar email from Scholar’s Press. I googled them and got here. Thank you for this post!

  66. Lagbaja says:

    This is just an unnecessary overreaction or may be paranoia. They are only making an offer to publish your work and they are not forcing the offer on you. If you’re not comfortable with the idea simply decline and that will end the matter.

  67. Eva says:

    The point is that they are trying to make a profit out of something that has already been made freely available to everyone via a creative commons licenses, without crediting the original publisher (often the university) – which is required for those licenses. Some CC licenses don’t even allow reproducing works for profit to begin with. They make it sound like they’re helping you spread your work, but in most cases it already IS available, and that’s how they found it.

  68. Amit says:

    Dear Eva,

    I totally agree to your views and your steps about it. I think it’s a bluff that these publishers are doing to cheat poor and needy graduate students who for their degree may find no ways than buying these thesis and only later can find out that they’re fooled. Recently one of my friends have published his thesis and he said the version is packaged with different name and clipped-contents (as compared to the free arXiv version), so to look as a different document in all together with a high-selling price. Although I see my friend thinks positive about this, while he thinks of CV-enrichment with a book contribution (and royalty if got sold), but I congratulate you for your rational and ethical thinking and thanks for this post!

    Best regards,
    Amit

  69. Joni Karjalainen says:

    After having considered this issue for a while, I have made two conclusions.

    First, as people have posted in different web articles about Scholars’ Press, I do feel their operations seems something close to a scam. Why so? If a price for a Bachelors’ or Masters’ thesis sold online (without making it explicit that the work indeed is one) is placed at 60-80 UK pounds, I fear that a buyer will waste his/hers money, and does not understand that (s)he is purchasing merely a student work for such a price. This to remind that new, esteemed academic publications are likely to cost a maximum of 20-30 UK pounds.

    Secondly, open access is combating the motive of commercialisation in the academic world, attempting to make publishing more democratic and open for everyone. Therefore, it does seem harsh to have a publisher in the market that claims to promote “equality of opportunities” while actually claiming the rights of “open access” works and commercialising them at a ridiculous price.

    Thirdly, as there is no peer-review or very limited editorial process to publishing a thesis, it seems like a false promise to ask money for such work. Rather have those students’ findings open for anyone to read.

    In sum, It just does not feel right. And, I would rather hope other kinds of mechanisms that promote aspiring students’ future careers are invented.

  70. Hadi Banaee says:

    I’ve got siomilar email from GlobeEdit company with the name Emily Johnson, Acquisition Editor.
    I have replied them a link to this post 🙂
    Thanks
    /Hadi from Sweden

  71. Tim Gordon says:

    Also got an email from Scholars’ Press–in my case from “Alysa Monroe, Acquisition Editor.” Emailed them a link to your blog.

    Thanks,
    Tim

  72. Blake Locklin says:

    I received a similar email, and reminder from “Christopher Hall” –based on a conference paper I presented last spring. In my field a conference paper is about 10 pages long.

  73. Jen says:

    I just received a similar email from Rosie Manning, a Acquisition Editor. Thank god I found your blog then I don’t need to waste my time with them.

  74. Anneli says:

    Thanks for sharing, got a similar email 🙂

  75. Julia Wittgenstein says:

    Dear Eva Amsen,

    I work for the publishing group you wrote about and I would like to get some things clear, if I may.
    It is true that we contact authors hoping they will let us publish their work. Many authors themselves would not believe their work worth publishing. However, somewhere in the world there is someone who would wish to read exactly this piece of work and would be willing to pay for it. Not all scientific work is available for free on the internet. But also after publication our authors may still offer their book online for free if they wish. Publishing extracts from their work in scientific journals is not a problem either.

    For many authors it is an honour, and in a way a confirmation/satisfaction to have their own book published. And in spite of all your criticism, please keep in mind that our service is absolutely free of charge. The assistance for our authors, the design of the book and the book cover, long-term data storage, ISBN, the selling of the book, all this is free of charge for our authors. We are financed exclusively through our book sales and we offer a fair share of the profits to our authors.

    Many other publishing houses charge their authors large sums to publish their work. Contributions towards printing costs of several thousand Euro are quite common. Not every author can afford this.

    Publishing Wikipedia contents is not illegal, as all Wikipedia articles are open content. Nevertheless, for some time we have been refraining from publishing Wikipedia articles as books, as we know that this may damage our reputation as a mainly scientifically oriented publishing house.

    To sum it up: The offer we make our authors is fair. Publication is free of charge and there are no hidden costs nor minimum purchase volumes for books. What is more, the books are available worldwide thanks to our well-developed distribution networks and can also be ordered online, and our authors receive a fair share of the profits. Besides, every author is free to continue offering his or her work for free download on the internet if he or she chooses to.

    Best regards,
    Julia Wittgenstein

  76. Gary says:

    Dear all,
    As so many others, I’ve received a smiliar e-mail (from Globeedit).
    I finished my PhD thesis back in 2008, and it is still unpublished. I’ve got what I want out of in terms of published articles. I’ve now decided to leave academia for good. I wonder what’s the harm for me in having them publish it for free?
    Thanks

  77. MNCanal says:

    Lol and thanks! I got the same email and decided to ignored first but they insisted in getting my agreement so I had to turn off a ridiculous offer. In my case, it was pretty obvious that it was a scam: they were offering to publish a work I’ve never wrote just gathering information from older CV’s where an old and abandonned project was listed!!!

  78. Mario R.J. Corbin says:

    It was Joseph Stromberg`s article on his experience publishing with LAP that actually got me thinking about doing it myself. After deciding to go through the process I wrote a short write up on my own experience:

    The fact is, LAP is what it is. As my experience illustrates, a lot of the things folks are complaining about can be allotted to them not reading the fine print. Would I recommend publishing with LAP? I’d recommend that people need to do their homework before publishing with any company and stop blaming everyone else for their own regrets.

  79. Caroline Ondracek says:

    Thanks Eva for this example- it’s useful for other’s in the same situation. Thanks Caroline

  80. PH says:

    Really appreciate this. Thank you for taking the time.

  81. Joel Wilcox says:

    I’m a bibliographic proofreader at a publishing house. Scholars Press (without an apostrophe) used to be owned by the Society of Biblical Literature but apparently VDM now controls it.

    Incidentally, the word “kindly” as a synonym for “please” is usually a clue-in to me that an email is a scam. For some reason it’s a popular semi-error among spammers.

  82. deborah nixon says:

    I”m not clear what all the vitriol is all about. You decide. I am going to let them publish my dissertation. why not? I can still distribute my dissertation at no charge from my website, to students etc. All I can’t do is agree to have my dissertation published by another publishing firm. That is standard and reasonable. As an author, you can’t have your book published and released by multiple publishers. I’m not sure what all the fuss is about, all this sense of outrage and conspiracy. They are offering to publish my work to those who wish to buy it. I get to have them pick up the cost of binding, formatting etc. and I can have nice book-like copies. If I don’t want copies, I don’t buy any. It costs me nothing.

    I have much more important things to concern myself with than to get tangled in a knot by this. There is nothing untoward here. Don’t do it if you don’t want to. But to slander a company like this is so bizarre.

    • Dr. Moses says:

      Hi,
      Deborah, I have the same thought process as you. It’s no costing me a DIME, so why NOT. In my eyes its all GAIN! I am going to allow them to publish my dissertation again. Have a winning day!

      Dr. Moses

  83. Hello Ava,

    I received a similar letter from LAP Lambert and found it suspicious as I did not publish but an article in a journal, but they asked for a thesis if there is one. So I checked the company and found your blog as well as other information. Thank you for sharing your experience. I will surely do the same as I think they started looking in non-English speaking countries as well.

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