Two new fake impact factor companies have appeared: SPARC Indexing and Root Indexing. They are both counterfeit metrics companies, in my opinion, and any journal that displays numbers from either of these two companies should be avoided completely.
The first one, SPARC Indexing, is interesting because “SPARC” is also the name of an open-access advocacy group connected to the Association of Research Libraries. The purpose of the library SPARC group is to provide lifetime employment to open-access advocates who travel from conference to conference repeating their hackneyed manifesto about killing off Elsevier and making all scholarly publishing open-access, like the journals on my lists. Except they don’t really want open-access, because that would mean an end to their jobs — sorry, I digress.
Looking at the SPARC Indexing website, we see this prominent statement: “An ISO 9001-2008 Certified Organization.” In my experience, whenever a publisher or metrics company claims it’s “An ISO 9001-2008 certified organization,” that really means it is NOT an ISO 9001-2008 certified organization. And that’s the case here — they are merely using the ISO name to make their fake company look legitimate.
It’s not apparent where SPARC is based, for their “contact” page does not list any location. The company doesn’t understand what “indexing” is in the context of scholarly journals. They think indexing is including the name of a journal on their list of journals with the fake impact factors they have assigned.
SPARC provides this naïve and illiterate self-description:
SPARC Indexing offering academic database services to researcher. Indexing is important parameter for any Research Journal/Serial Publication to increase their visibility so that maximum researchers can explore new innovative ideas and opportunities all around the world which includes citation indexing, analysis, and maintains citation databases covering thousands of academic journals, books, proceedings and any approved documents.
Fake metrics companies, like SPARC Indexing, are a side effect of open-access publishing, and just like open-access advocacy organizations, they will probably never go away.
Root falsely claims to be a “society,” and its self-description goes like this:
Root Society for Indexing and Impact Factor Service (rootindexing.com) is a society to provide indexing to all types of online and offline journals to get international visibility of research and also provide impact factor (RIF-Root Impact Factor) to the journal to impove [sic] journal visibility in the world of research. Lot of members are giving their service to this society. It is a completely free service to index any journal in the world.
It helps user to find a suitable international journal to publish their work. All indexed journals will be submitted in all search engines, online libraries, social media etc to get more researchers under a single platform rootindexing.com.
Why would anyone want to use a metric from a company that can’t even communicate properly? Looking at Root’s website, I see 249 journals already included in its database.
I recommend using both SPARC and Root’s lists as blacklists. Don’t submit any papers to journals included in their lists. It’s possible that some open-access publishers are the developers of these and other fake metrics, and they use them to promote their journals.
The only authentic impact factor is assigned by the company Thomson Reuters in its product InCites Journal Citation Reports. Don’t use or trust an impact factor from any other source. Your librarian can help you access the authentic resource.
Appendix: Selections from the domain name registration data for the two fake companies:
Registrant Name: Mukesh Arora
Registrant Street: Infront of choudhary Aman Dharam kanta,
Registrant Street: Pugal Road, Bikaner
Registrant City: Bikaner
Registrant State/Province: Rajasthan
Registrant Postal Code: 334004
Registrant Country: IN
Registrant Phone: +91.9413112979
Registrant Phone Ext:
Registrant Fax Ext:
Registrant Email: email@example.com
B. Root Indexing Domain Name: rootindexing.com
Registrar URL: http://www.godaddy.com
Registrant Name: Kumar Desai
Registrant Organization: Rootindexing
Name Server: NS11.DOMAINCONTROL.COM
Name Server: NS12