Letter to the Chief Editor

  • Zafar Ali Choudry Vice Chancellor, Faisalabad Medical University, Faisalabad Pakistan
Keywords: Letter to the Chief Editor


Dear Chief Editor,

 It is with great privilege that I pen these words to you, addressing the esteemed journal of our institution, the Annals of PMC. In this communication, I wish to highlight a significant and pressing concern within the realm of scientific journals today — the matter of "Paper Mills."

Paper mills refer to organizations that engage in unethical practices related to scientific publishing, such as selling fake scientific manuscripts or offering authorship positions for a fee. These organizations have been identified in various scientific disciplines, and their activities include plagiarism, data fabrication, redundant publications, and copyright breaches. The prevalence of paper mills has led to the retraction of numerous publications, with over 1000 papers identified as originating from paper mills since January 2020. These papers are often associated with fraudulent practices and are typically retracted or labeled with expressions of concern. The International Association of Scientific, Technical, and Medical Publishers has launched a tool to detect papers generated by paper mills, aiming to tackle research fraud. The increasing frequency of retracted papers originating from paper mills poses a challenge for the research community, highlighting the need for new mechanisms to identify and prevent this type of misconduct.

Professionals may opt for paper mills for various reasons. One reason is the pressure to publish to achieve academic success, which has led to unethical practices in academia, including the use of paper mills to buy authorship positions or obtain fake scientific manuscripts. Another reason could be the convenience and cost-effectiveness of using paper mills to have work published in reputable journals without going through the rigorous peer review process. Additionally, some professionals may turn to paper mills due to the desire for mass production of papers with a consistent intaglio pattern or to meet specific industry standards. It is important for editors of academic journals to be aware of the potential targeting by paper mills and implement editorial procedures to counteract these fraudulent practices.

In my view, paper mills are hazardous for research, unethical, and should be discouraged, as they may promote fake data and may cause defamation of the journal as well as publishing authority and professionals. Therefore, I wish to caution you to be vigilant against such misconduct, as it could jeopardize the reputation of both the journal and the institution.

I wish you and the whole editorial team best of luck for this and upcoming issues of the journal.



Vice Chancellor

Faisalabad Medical University

Faisalabad Pakistan

How to Cite
Choudry, Z. A. (2024). Letter to the Chief Editor. Annals of Punjab Medical College, 18(1). https://doi.org/10.29054/apmc/2024.1599