AHA Activities

Suspicious E-mails Targeting Scholars

Professional Division, December 2013

The AHA Professional Division urges members to be aware of an increasingly common suspicious e-­mail targeting scholars in a variety of disciplines. The e-­mail consists of an offer by a supposed scholarly journal to publish a conference paper. Typically, the initial e-­mail contains grammatical errors and unprofessional language. The respondent who submits a paper for “peer review” soon learns that the paper has been accepted, but that there is a “service charge” (for reviewing, editing, and printing) that can run into many hundreds of dollars. These solicitations have been sent from “editors” of journals that do not exist. Scholars who respond to such solicitations, and then revise a paper in the hope of having it published, run the risk of wasting their precious time—­and money. The Professional Division recommends members diligently investigate the legitimacy of offers they receive via e-­mail from unknown sources.