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How many “Zhai Tianlin” are in Chinese academic circles?

At the end of November today, Rao Yi, the president of the Capital Medical University, reported three scholars in real name, alleging that the other party was involved in fraudulent thesis. Earlier, Cao Xuetao, president of Nankai University and academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, was also suspected of fraudulent dissertation, which triggered an “academic earthquake.”

More evidence shows that fraudulent dissertation is not an individual behavior in the Chinese academic circle.

The academic journal giant Springer (Springer) issued a statement in April 2017 announcing its journal “Oncology” The 107 papers published in Biology were retracted for alleged peer review fraud. These papers all come from China, affecting 119 domestic universities and hospitals, and 4 overseas universities and hospitals.

According to media statistics, this withdrawal event set a number of records: academic journals have the largest number of single retractions, the largest number of retractions from a single journal, and Chinese scholars have been collectively retracted most.

Why are there so many fake papers? Where did these papers come from? Where to go?

AIPharos Moonlight conducted an exclusive investigation into this gray production line.

“Knowledge changes destiny”

Fake papers. This is an industry that is widely known but avoided.

On Baidu, if you search for this keyword, you can’t find the relevant entry except to see critical reports. But if you search for “Thesis Service”, you will see a row of company pages.

Among them, a website called “China Papers” is particularly eye-catching.

When you log in to this website, the homepage says: The largest thesis service platform in China. In the past ten years, more than 1,000 writers with the best writing ability have provided help to hundreds of thousands of people through this website.

In his lower right corner is a line: Knowledge changes destiny.

The website claims that it is China’s first dissertation “Cloud Platform”. Through the dissertation “Shangyun”, a database of 8 million papers has been created and is constantly being updated. Customers can check the progress of the dissertation at any time after placing an order on their website, and after completing the dissertation, the website will save all versions of the dissertation for up to one year.

The number one service on the website is: writing a dissertation. Others include: large-scale literature portals, dissertation resources, digital libraries, document sharing platforms, and more.

China Papers Website section. Image source: China Papers Network

The group of this service includes domestic and overseas masters and doctors, as well as groups of scientific research workers who need professional titles. According to AIPharos Moonlight, the website can publish papers in domestic core journals and foreign scientific journals included in SCI.

What is the cost?

It’s simple, transfer via Alipay. For half the deposit, you get tickets to your favorite journal. After paying half of the payment, you can read half of the paper through the “Remote Tool” (aka QQ) and pay the other half.Get the full paper.

The website claims that no website dares not accept a deposit like China Papers. China Papers Network adopts the method of “free of deposit and Alipay secured transactions”. It only needs to pay to the Alipay platform first. After completing the full paper, you can view it remotely, and then confirm the payment when you are satisfied.

On the Transaction Price List of China Papers, the price of a 20,000-word master’s thesis is more than 4,000 yuan. If you want to publish it in an overseas journal, the cost is even higher, up to tens of thousands.

The customer service on the website said that they have solved the urgent needs of more than 30,000 customers. “We solve difficult problems for our customers and dedicate ourselves in helping intellectuals to establish their academic value.”

Inspirational messages from “customers” displayed on this site. Picture source: China Papers

While praising themselves, they will continue to urge you to place an order and display screenshots of customers who are trading in real time. On a WeChat screenshot we saw, the chat list was full of transaction records, and one customer placed 35 orders directly.

A chat record with the customer service of China Papers. Image source: AIPharos Moonlight Agency

China Papers has confidence.

It declares to the viewers: We know that the safest is the cheapest, and the cheapest is what you want most.

As for the most critical part, how soon can I publish my paper after payment?

The advertised publicity of the website is: 40 days of domestic core journals. And his customer service answered: one and a half years.

Three Rabbit Caves

China Papers is not the only website that provides related “paper services.”

In the screening, we found more similar websites, but there are many websites that are almost pixel-level similar to China Papers: the same website name, the same website logo, the same order, and even the same “Knowledge changes destiny”, but the background is different.

For example, one of the websites with the same name as China Papers has developed more service modules. In addition to being a customer, you can also contribute to it and publish “original first papers.” The site claims to review each feed carefully, but cannot guarantee its release. If you are a publishing house or magazine, the options it offers are: I am willing to cooperate and win-win together.

Study found that vests similar to China Papers also include but are not limited to the following websites: Periodicals, 360sci.

Inquiring through the website registration tool, we found that except for one of the above four websites, which were displayed as “not filed or cancelled”, the other three websites were registered in Beijing Bestway Culture Communication Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as “Beijing Bestway”).

According to the company’s information, there are six thesis service websites under Beijing Bestway. These websites include all kinds of “gunmen” who write, publish, translate, etc. at home and abroad, Chinese and English. Business.

Some of the websites registered under Beijing Bestway. Image source: Enterprise search

The legal person and single individual shareholder of the company are Liu Zhijie, and the supervisor is Gan Zhenlei.

The Transoceanic Journey of a SCI Paper

In the commercial area of ​​Beijing Bestway, SCI papers that are “polished and published” are obviously a more sophisticated industry chain.

The domestic and international cooperation in mass production of SCI fake papers is not new.

In 2014 and 2017, there were hundreds of SCI papers and large-scale counterfeiting incidents involving hundreds of people in China, which caused a shock in the scientific research circle. How does this production process work? The two websites, Periodicals and 360sci, disclosed all the “processes” in detail.

The journal Huizhuang Mingyi first explained why their business was generated.

China had 3.61 million practicing physicians in 2018. For millions of physicians to advance in their careers, most must publish more than one paper in a foreign scientific journal that is accepted for inclusion in the SCI.

This is a huge challenge. The Chinese doctor community is hard-working and mostly lacks energy. From scientific research design, English literature reading, experimental data collection and analysis to peer review, each level has formed a high threshold for doctors. If a doctor writes his own thesis from beginning to end, it may take months or even years to complete, and then he faces the risk of frequent rejection after completion.

The heavy medical work and the aggressive promotion channels have created a one-stop thesis service organization.

In the thesis service, “medical writing counselling” is the first. According to the official website, the advantage of the journal is the team of hundreds of expert editors qualified by the European and American Writers Association. Some of these professional editors hold doctorate degrees in medicine and biology, and have been engaged in editing optimization for non-native language writers.

The journal collection features one of the editors: Hilary Cadman.

Through the search engine, we can find out that this lady owns an editing company, and we can see that WHO treats herJob evaluation: She does a great job!

WHO evaluation of Hilary Cadman. Image source: society for editors and proofreaders

Foreign editors are expensive. More editors come from China. They are recruited.

On the official website of the journal, the three levels of recruiting talents are listed:

Employees with an undergraduate degree in English or above, engaged in translation, modification, butting with foreign editors, etc., the annual salary is 50,000-70,000;

Persons with a bachelor’s degree or higher who are engaged in literature information collection and clinical trial review Between 100,000 and 200,000;

High-level talents with reviewer status in SCI indexed magazines, reviewing papers on a part-time basis, discovering and improving paper problems from various aspects such as scientific research design, data analysis, and language grammar. One year can enjoy the company’s dividend right.

In addition to the ability to write with pen, biomedical papers often require experimental data, which requires scientific research collaboration.

On the website, the journal lists partner institutions including many top universities and tertiary hospitals. Among them, Peking Union Medical College Hospital, Fudan University, Eye, Otolaryngology Hospital, Fudan University, Ruijin Hospital, Shanghai Jiaotong UniversityFive universities and hospitals, including Tongji University, are also involved in the Springer (Springer) statement.

A cooperative agency declared by the Journal Exchange website. Mapping: AIPharos Moonlight Agency

With a gunman on behalf of the author, a scientific institution that provides experimental data, and a key person for review, in theory, the journal pool has been able to produce papers that have been included in SCI journals from beginning to end.

But this is not enough. For a thesis service company to grow, it also needs a huge sales network. Therefore, you can see the advertisement of recruiting “intermediaries” on the official website of the journal: the successful signing, you can get 5% cash back. According to a 100,000 SCI signed article, the middleman can get a commission of 5,000 yuan.

The construction of sales network is the engine of the enterprise.

On these sites, we can see their ads for “joining agents”. From universities, hospitals, administrative units, scientific research units, biomedical companies to their peers in thesis services, they have almost attracted the entire pharmaceutical industry. As long as these franchisees successfully introduce a single business, they can get the commission.

So far, the journal collection has formed a tight thesis service chain.

The thesis service chain listed on the journal sink website. Mapping: AIPharos Moonlight Agency

So, is it really possible to successfully publish a paper in a SCI journal through the journal sink?

To reassure customers, the journal reposted an email. The content of this e-mail was that Dr. Chen’s thesis was revised and successfully received in (Computational and Theoretical Chemistry) . The journal belongs to the academic journal publishing company Elsevier, with an impact factor of 1.344 in 2018. The honorary editor is Clifford Dykstra, former director of the Chemistry Department at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Screenshot of an email response to a SCI paper posted on the journal website Image source: Periodicals

At this point, if you still have worries, you should only delay the submission. In this regard, the journal remittance also has an account system: the draft is free of charge.

With a huge thesis service sales network, the journal exchange has even started to do business around it.

In the propaganda, for those medical representatives who are eager to tackle doctors and the pharmaceutical companies behind them, the journal’s network of contacts is a valuable asset. Whether it is tracking customer groups through SCI academic conferences, or using SCI thesis services and drug lectures for publicity, SCI marketing is effective for the majority of doctors.

As far as security is concerned, customers of the aforementioned sites need not worry. Journal Hui promised on the official website: we andThe editing teacher signs a confidentiality agreement so that you don’t have to worry about any problems, and no one knows that you have used our services.

Academic “Dark Web”

Where exactly is China Papers?

According to the Beijing sales company address shown on its website, we went to the Xueyan Building near the east gate of Tsinghua University. After a carpet search, we didn’t find the company’s office. When we tried to ask the customer service to come out for an interview, we also encountered a rejection from the other party.

The address of the Beijing sales company, Xueyan Building, as shown by China Papers. Image source: AIPharos Moonlight Agency

Of course, real customers are not so real. According to our investigation and understanding, most similar paper service websites mostly communicate and work online. The one-stop service for the entire thesis processing does not need to produce actual contact.

In 2014, after Scientific American revealed that MedChina, a “thesis factory” in Shanghai, mass-produced medical papers, domestic media visited the company’s office, only to find that people had gone empty. The surging reporter called the company, and they claimed that they were only engaged in “scientific research translation”, and they would open another order in February next year.

The doctors who signed the papers are frightened. Producers who really falsify in batches on the thesis line can continue to open their doors as long as they move offices and change their URLs.

Under the mediation of these hidden “paper factories”, a “dark web” in academia has long been formed.

You know, the key to writing a dissertation is to check the weight and standard, not the absorption of knowledge and re-creation. In the academic “dark web” built by thesis service intermediaries, “gunners” and dissertation demanders, intermediaries have earned considerable commissions. Among them, “Gunner” every