Our recent paper on how responsive politicians are has been online only a couple of hours when it was (provisionally) awarded “best paper”… I mention this because this sort of academic spam is new to me (probably not to others).
First thing I noted, I have never heard of them. Second, it’s unlikely that we get a best paper award for a paper which reports a null finding — these are just not “sexy”.
Third, their e-mail address is from a domain that actually doesn’t have a website. OK, this wasn’t the third thing chronologically, but hey, that certainly doesn’t look like a legitimate sender!
Let’s look at the mail in more detail:
Yes⸮, you have selected us among many other papers, and you don’t even know my name. This definitely doesn’t look like a legitimate conversation, definitely not like someone actually read the paper: it looks like they didn’t manage to scrape the name from the journal website.
We are delighted to inform you that you have been provisionally selected for the “Best Researcher Award” at the upcoming International Research Excellence and Best Paper Awards. We believe that your remarkable contributions to the field make you an excellent candidate for this prestigious award.
Great, very specific…⸮ what remarkable contribution, to what field? And then my favourite bit: provisionally selected. OK, dear spammer, sometimes we can nominate our own work for an award, but then it either wins or doesn’t (typically the latter). When it wins, it’s because a committee of humans actually read all the nominated papers and gave it some thought, so they have a bit more to say than “remarkable contributions”.
Nomination for the award is currently open, and we encourage you to submit your research profile for consideration. To submit your nomination, please click on the following link and provide the required details.
Hang on, didn’t I already win, or provisionally win? Now you want me to nominate the paper for an award I have never heard of? Changing the story within 2 paragraphs, that’s not bad. Now, if you manage to identify the paper, you should actually know my details, so this smacks of fraud. Again, I guess they didn’t manage to scrape enough from the journal website, plus I guess they are after information they don’t really need.
Nomination Link: https://x-i.me/…
Very trustworthy indeed⸮ Now you are taking me to an external website (I can’t comment on that, because I didn’t click on it). x-i.me is a URL shortener, that’s not professional.
We appreciate your dedication and hard work towards advancing scientific research.
Note: Submission is peer-reviewed by editorial members.
Thank you for your kind words, but who are you to care about advancing scientific work? I suspect they included peer-review for the keyword or to sound legitimate — but how can you select an award if you don’t review the submissions?
The Organizing Committee,
International Research Excellence and Best Paper Awards.
Very personal⸮ Seriously, it’s perfectly in line with all the other signs that should prevent you from clicking on that link.