Is iConcept Press a Vanity Press?

I received an email from iConcept Press this morning:

Based on your paper: Test-first Java concurrency for the classroom (2010), we would like to invite you to submit a chapter to our book project under the working title: Java in Academic and Research. The editor of this book is [redacted].

We are especially interested in the motivation of your problem and why you model your problem in such way. We would like you to expand the paper and contribute to our book. Please note that we are not asking to republish the mentioned paper.

All our books are published as hard copy with ISBN and as open access. Each corresponding author will receive one copy of the book free of charge. The publishing fee (for each paper) is USD$38/page for the first 16 pages and USD$18/page thereafter. Each chapter normally has 16 – 25 pages.

About $600 for a book chapter, that sounds like a vanity press to me. iConcept Press claims to do peer review, but I don’t exactly trust that claim:

Is it that I simply pay money and my article can be printed in your book?

No. We go through several review processes. If your article is not up to our standards or is not what we require, we will not publish your article, even if you pay us.

Who are the reviewers? Who are the other authors who contribute? The editor of the book was given, but he seems to be rather unknown. The books that have been published by iConcept Press don’t seem to be complete garbage, judging by a quick glance at bioinformatics material, for example, from an outsider’s perspective, but I’m in no position to really make that determination.

I think if it weren’t for the publishing fee, I might roll with it. But I’m not going to spend $600 to have something published that might end up being a diamond in a turd.

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About Mathias

Software development engineer. Principal developer of DrJava. Recent Ph.D. graduate from the Department of Computer Science at Rice University.
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10 Responses to Is iConcept Press a Vanity Press?

  1. khatchad says:

    I got a similar email. In fact, it seems to be a script with a few fields filled in. Anyhow, thank you for this information. I agree that it seems to be a vanity press.

  2. Mathias says:

    Thanks for your comment, Raffi. It was quite clear to me right from the bat that I wasn’t the only one honored with this kind of invitation ;)

  3. Mathias says:

    After yet another message from someone who received the same message and who decided to decline the offer, I sent my response to iConcept Press as well.

    Thank you for the offer, but I have to decline. These are my reasons:

    1. The editor, Mr. Ke Cai, does not seem to be known in the field.
    2. I do not know how you perform peer review or who is on your program
      committee.
    3. Without a trustworthy peer review process, the only way to judge
      the quality of the book is to know who the other contributing authors
      are. There is no way for me to find out who else has been invited to
      contribute.
    4. The money should always flow to the authors, not the other way around.

    Furthermore, the title “Java in Academic and Research” is nonsensical
    and not parallel in construction. It would be desirable to have an
    editor who actually knows how to edit.

    Should you be able to address these four concerns, e.g. by (1) finding
    a notable editor, (2) publicizing your program committee performing
    peer review or (3) publishing the list of invited authors, and (4) not
    charging the authors for the publishing, I would be happy to
    reconsider.

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  7. rekblom says:

    iConcept Press is now listed under Beall’s List of predatory publishers:
    http://scholarlyoa.com/publishers/

  8. Mathias says:

    Thanks for your comment, Robert. That is a useful list.

  9. buttonzhu says:

    Just to clarify, iConcept is not listed in Beall’s List of predatory publishers.

  10. Mathias says:

    Thanks for letting me know, Jimmy.

    iConcept Press was listed on Beall’s List, though, at some point before January 15, 2013.

    http://web.archive.org/web/20130115225454/http://scholarlyoa.com/publishers/

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