The demand for the sale and purchase of papers is large, and the seller provides "one-stop" service——
Can Breaking the "Five Onlys" Stop the Wind of Academic Transactions
Teachers and students in colleges and universities have to face the investigation of theses.
But can you imagine that for some people, posting a paper can be as easy as online shopping?
In the process of paper buying and selling, the buyer only needs to pay, and the seller writes and distributes the "one-stop" service.
Behind such "simple" operations, knowledge production activities have exceeded the boundaries of what they should have been.
The market demand for papers is strong, PhD students buy SCI papers for job applications
Among the various standards run by universities, thesis is one of the "hard currency".
It's about the promotion of professional titles, the evaluation of excellence, and some of the basic thresholds for entry into teaching.
At the beginning of 2010, the media published a report revealing that the investigation of the Wuhan University Shenyang research team found that the output value of my country's trading papers in 2009 was as high as 1 billion yuan.
10 years later, how is the sale of papers?
The reporter contacted one of the parties.
Liu Jin, after graduating from a master's degree, taught in a vocational school in the south.
Now, he and his friends are studying for a doctorate degree in an overseas university.
Because of the epidemic, most of the time is online class.
Regarding the purpose of Ph.D., Liu Jin is straightforward: break out of the siege and teach in a three-book or a good two-book school.
In the "four-year plan" of PhD reading, the most critical link is "issue SCI papers".
According to Liu Jin, with his doctorate and the advantages of SCI papers, it is not a problem to find a job in a general undergraduate college. If you are lucky, you can also get a considerable "settling-in allowance."
In his calculations, this investment is "a good deal."
At the beginning of 2020, after "long investigation", Liu Jin and his friends decided to buy an SCI paper.
The two were co-written as the first author and corresponding author.
They plan to buy "four-zone papers" (note: journals are sorted in order of impact factor, this is the lowest area in the SCI), "the whole process is one month to write and distribute, and you can spend 39,000 yuan before and after."
Two months after paying 5,000 yuan with his friends and a total deposit of 10,000 yuan, Liu Jin received a notice for the journal's manuscript, "However, it will take half a year to wait for the official publication."
However, the reality quickly changed.
In 2020, the Ministry of Science and Technology issued "Several Opinions on Eliminating the "Thesis-only" Bad Orientation in Scientific and Technological Evaluation (for Trial Implementation)", and the Ministry of Education issued "Several Opinions on Eliminating the "Thesis-Only" Bad Orientation in the Evaluation of University Philosophy and Social Science Research ".
The two ministries and commissions put forward requirements on the use of SCI papers-related indicators, "The evaluation focuses on the innovation level and scientific value of papers, and SCI papers-related indicators are not used as a direct basis for judgment."
Liu Jin found that “the abacus seems to be mistyped.” Some colleges and universities have changed their paper evaluation criteria and no longer rigidly link SCI papers with teacher recruitment. “SCI papers in the four districts seem to have no advantage.” Originally planned to post another one. SCI's Liu Jin told his friends, "Forget it."
Because they had already received the acceptance notice for the first paper, they had to "bite the bullet and pay the balance."
Can I buy high-level papers?
A university teacher revealed that the higher the impact factor of the journal, the more expensive the papers. "The asking price for papers in a district is as high as 100,000 yuan. This situation is rare, but not without it."
Asking for 2000 yuan to write an undergraduate thesis: "Change until you are satisfied"
In addition to buying and selling papers in the process of appraising professional titles and completing scientific research tasks, this "wrong trend" has also begun to spread in the masters and undergraduates.
The reporter asked in a WeChat group with nearly 500 students: "Can anyone write an undergraduate thesis?"
In less than a minute, a person named Li Bin, who noted as a postgraduate student at a university in Xinjiang, added the reporter WeChat.
"If it's journalism or an undergraduate thesis in economics, I can come."
After understanding the general direction of the thesis, Li Bin said: "I happened to do this on a topic this semester."
The implication is that his course essays can be "revised" and sold to reporters.
In order to dispel the reporter's "worries", Li Bin showed his rich experience to reporters. He had also taken over the writing of undergraduate thesis in economics before, because he studied economics undergraduate and graduated journalism.
In terms of cost, he added that if the content of the question is added, the asking price is 2,000 yuan.
However, he has repeatedly emphasized the "package modification", and "will be modified according to the modification comments provided by the instructor until you are satisfied."
In addition, Li Bin also revealed some "routines" for the sale of papers in online stores, advising reporters to be careful about "buying papers": "Online writing is cheaper, about 1,300 yuan. They will find a paper and translate it into a small language. , And then translate it back to Chinese and send it directly to you. Although this paper looks original, the sentences are not smooth. If you let them modify it, you need to add more money."
In order to confirm this statement, he then sent a screenshot to the reporter. Some "customers" complained about the online shop's paper writing service, "It costs money to change it once."
The reporter asked if he wrote the paper on his behalf, would there be a risk of being found out?
Li Bin happily replied: "If you don't tell me, who can know?" But he also reminded, "Before submitting the paper and defending, you have to read the paper in advance, otherwise you can't answer the defense, I can't help it. ."
The sale of papers in online stores has been repeatedly banned: "Waiting for half a year" in case of peak publication
Nearing graduation, You Qing, a doctoral student in a university in Beijing, is working hard to write a 200,000-word doctoral thesis.
The requirements of "writing a paper" and "posting a paper" have always made her and her classmates feel a lot of pressure.
Facing the situation where someone published several SSCI papers within a year, Youqing felt that there was a problem.
However, some students seemed to have seen through the mystery, and underestimated it, "This is normal, just paying for intellectual copyright".
This made Youqing "very speechless," she told reporters.
"Some online stores can provide paper writing services and can guarantee quality."
Earlier media reports stated that a doctoral student working in Shanghai has been selling SCI papers online for 10 years. He has sold more than 100 papers and published them in academic journals at home and abroad, earning millions of dollars in profits and most of the buyers are College teachers and students.
The reporter's investigation found that such blatant stores have been removed from the shelves, but they have not disappeared.
Following Youqing's prompt, the reporter found an online store and searched for "journals", and a large number of store information such as "journal checking" and other store information appeared.
The reporter randomly entered an online store and asked: "For graduate students, to evaluate scholarships, you need to buy papers." He quickly got a reply, "Add WeChat chat to facilitate the arrangement of journal specialists, and recommend suitable journals one-on-one." Then, the journal specialist Lillijia I went to the reporter's WeChat and asked about the requirements, and quickly selected a general journal for the reporter, wrote and distributed it on behalf of the reporter, quoting 1,600 yuan.
This fee includes full-process fees such as article revision and polish fees, public relations fees, and page fees.
Lili urged reporters to make sure as soon as possible, "At the peak of publication, many 2021 graduates are going to publish, and now they have come to prepare in advance, and the full manuscript is very fast. If you want to publish the journal that can be found on Zhizhi, Wait about half a year."
Youqing’s question is: “If academic ethics is not sufficient to restrict these behaviors, why not judge the sale of papers as illegal, at least in the field of intellectual property rights.”
In May 2018, the General Office of the CPC Central Committee and the General Office of the State Council issued the "Opinions on Further Strengthening the Construction of Scientific Research Credit" (hereinafter referred to as the "Opinions").
The "Opinions" pointed out that the market supervision and management, public security and other agencies should actively investigate and severely punish intermediary service agencies that engage in the sale of academic papers, proxy writing, and forging, fictitious, and falsifying research data.
The absence of legal supervision and the school’s unwillingness to deal with it publicly has curbed the difficulty in the sale of paper
Many people have the need to publish papers, but journals themselves are scarce resources. The requirement to publish core journals and journals included in SCI has further exacerbated this situation.
Zhang Lin, a professor at Wuhan University, said frankly that my country’s existing relevant laws and regulations are still difficult to effectively punish the sale and purchase of papers, and have not produced sufficient deterrence on the demand side of the paper, the writing side, and third-party intermediaries.
She suggested that “to formulate clear laws and regulations to regulate the sale and purchase of papers and related entities involved”.
"If there is just need, there will be a market." Zhang Lin said that the sale of essays is very concealed and it is difficult to investigate and deal with, and it is generally difficult for schools to implement effective management.
Even if it is found, most of them are unwilling to deal with the school publicly for the protection of the reputation of the school, and may even cover it intentionally.
In fact, the research direction of each researcher is relatively clear and fixed. It is difficult to find papers that are exactly the same as their research directions in the paper buying and selling market.
For example, Zhang Lin said that she has been engaged in science and technology evaluation and science and technology policy research. If she suddenly published a business management paper in an SCI journal one day, it must be very suspicious.
The reporter's investigation found that it is not uncommon for some teachers to spend money on papers and publish papers that have little relevance to daily research.
This is an easy flaw in the paper buying and selling chain.
"In the future, under the establishment of a responsible peer review system and a good scientific research culture in our country, ordinary researchers should not dare to take this risk." The "peer review system" in Zhang Lin's mouth refers to the need for review experts to target papers Make high-quality judgments on substantive content and value, and check beforehand.
"Innovative, high-quality papers are difficult to find in the relatively low-end paper buying and selling market, so the demand for paper buying and selling will be greatly reduced.”
In addition, in response to the issue of undergraduate and graduate level participation in dissertation sales, Zhang Lin believes that tutors are required to implement full guidance and supervision responsibilities, and strengthen the review and review of dissertations at all levels. "Blind reviews on and off campus should not be a formality to ensure graduation rate." .
In the context of breaking the "five wei", my country urgently needs to establish a practical multi-dimensional comprehensive evaluation system. Zhang Lin added, "When the new evaluation system is gradually improved, the pure dependence of the academic community on paper publication will naturally decrease." .
Establish a lifetime accountability system for academic achievements and govern academic transactions
In recent years, under the background of the prevalence of thesis assessment method in colleges and universities, when buying a page has developed into buying a paper, violations related to thesis have intensified.
Associate Professor Wang Chuanyi of Tsinghua University believes: “The sale of essays is an academic transaction. Like the improper signature of a work, it is an activity in which favor, power, and capital are exchanged for intellectual property in an uncompliant way. It is academic fraud in nature.”
"To radically control academic transactions, we must fully realize the'three impossibility'." Wang Chuanyi reminded that peer review cannot completely solve the problem. The names of their minor children can also be published in strictly peer-reviewed SCI journals.
It is impossible to completely abandon the paper standard. Once other forms of academic achievements are included in the evaluation, they will also be "tradable", and there may be a situation of "nothing because of choking." .
It is impossible to strengthen network supervision and prevent the emergence of third-party intermediaries. As long as the benefits exceed the costs, academic transactions will appear in a more hidden form.
Wang Chuanyi believes: "The key to solving the problem lies in the establishment of a lifelong accountability system for academic achievements, so that those who attempt academic fraud, academic rent-seeking, and academic traders dare not do, are not easy to do, and are unwilling to do it. In the review stage before the publication of the results, increase academic In the ethics review process, reviewers can randomly contact any author and request materials that match their contributions."
In fact, the current international academic community advocates open data, open peer review, and establish a national open and transparent platform for the exchange of scientific and technological achievements.
"Once you need to publish a paper, you must upload the relevant data, process, and results of the paper to a public platform that is open to everyone, and accepts reference, inquiries, and supervision." Zhang Lin believes that "make scientific research data information, review information and achievement information The maximum degree of openness and transparency will greatly increase the possibility of the discovery of academic misconduct such as the sale of papers, and help promote the construction of scientific research integrity."
"After the paper is published, it should not be settled once and for all." Wang Chuanyi suggested that when the results of the paper are used in subsequent academic evaluation activities, such as recruitment, awards, interviews and project declarations, an academic ethics review link should also be added. Interviews, telephone calls or By email, the authenticity of the authors' academic contributions will be randomly verified.
He said, “Once fraudulent behavior is discovered, or reported and verified, it will be included in the national credit information sharing platform and be held accountable for life.”
(Our reporter Chen Peng, some interviewees in this article use pseudonyms)