Philip <philip howetiao.net> explained to "Dear Scholars/Professors" that "[t]o enhance the communication between scholars and specialists, we sincerely solicit papers from around the world." The advertised 2016 International Conference on Agricultural Science and Biotechnology, in Xi'an, includes the topic of "Cyborg Art." The 2016 International Conference on Biology and Life Sciences, in Hangzhou, includes all medical specialties. Apparently, the latter is combined with the 2016 International Conference on Public Health and Medical Sciences (same city and dates), which includes "Insurance Medicine."
Delanie <email@example.com> writes (7/21/16): Dear Professor and Researcher, conference123.net devotes to hosting international conferences covering a wide range of disciplines. To enhance the communication between scholars and specialists, we sincerely solicit papers from around the world." The 2016 International Conference on Education and Information technologies, in Jinan, ranges from physical education to semiconductors. Toby <Toby@werexiang.net> had the same message (8/15/16) with three disparate conferences in Jinan and a fourth in Nanjing.
Journey@valuemao.net advised "Dear Specialists" in a notice entitled "Conference Alerts 2016 -- China" (7/29/16) that conference123.net "sincerely solicit papers from around the world. It is an organization devotes to organizing international symposiums covering a wide range of disciplines." No conferences were specified.
Sunday, December 25, 2016
Conference123.net seems to specialize in mushy mega-conferences in China. As the website explains (12/25/16), "[i]t devotes to hosting symposium with professional advantages from innovative perspective." The firm is in Shanghai, and appears to have been around for only a few years. Its 2017 conferences are billed as the second, or at most the third in their series. For example, the 2017 3rd International Conference on Economics, Management and Social Sciences "serves as an optimal platform for academic communications, exchange of ideas and inspirations to invite specialists and scholars in the fields related to economics, management and social sciences, including hot issues such as economy, politics, law, ethics, education, management and history."
Saturday, December 24, 2016
|From www.bitcongress.com/companyProfile.asp (12/24/16)
BIT Congress, Inc., a BIT Group Global company, is the largest professional conference organizing and business operating company in China. We have over 500 employees, 60% among which are with master and Ph.D. degree.
Founded in 2003, BIT has organized 300 conferences at home and abroad, and has expanded its operations to include such areas as biotechnology, pharmaceutical, environmental protection, new energy, advanced materials, IT, marine technology, economy, etc.. BIT Congress Inc. has invited over 45 Nobel Prize Laureates and more than 100,000 experts and entrepreneurs to participate in our programs. [← Translation: We spam ad infinitum.]
In 2013, BIT was awarded Foreign Experts Databank of SAFEA-Dalian Subdivision. By taking advantage of over 12,000,000 human resources items in roughly 80 countries, [← Translation: Beats me, but "taking advantage" may be the operative phrase here.] BIT offers services in intelligence, investment and technology for entrepreneurs, governments and institutions. As an industry leader in China, we continuously strive for the transition from scientific research to practical use.
|From Wikipedia (12/24/16)
BIT Life Sciences (or BIT Congress Inc., BIT Group Global Ltd) is a predatory, for profit meetings, incentives, conferencing, exhibitions (MICE) company based in Dalian, China, that specializes in arranging multiple scientific congresses that been accused of being fraudulent and have been described as "predatory". The company is part of a wave of organizations that have appeared in China in past several years noted for arranging congresses with little academic merit and with the primary aim of generating revenue rather than scientific knowledge sharing. [← As postings on OMICS indicate, India offers stiff competition.]
- The Dalian Letters
- Conference to Explode DNA Forensic Analysis Through Alchemy (correspondence accepting a paper on "K-DNA, A Nonoptical Isomer with Strongly Chimerical Properties" discovered "through the technique of alchemy")
- BIT Global Group's Next Flaky Forensics Conference
- Annual Symposium of Drug Delivery Systems (SDDS)
- International Congress of Forensics & Police Tech Expo
- International Congress of Genetics (ICG)
- World Gene Convention (WGC)
- World DNA Day (WDD)
- Alla Katsnelson, Conference Kerfuffle Hits Scientists, The Scientist, Aug. 19, 2009, reports that "Confusion over an upcoming cardiology conference in Shanghai has forced registered scientists and clinicians to fight for reimbursements, including one who faced more than $2000 in spurious credit card charges he suspects are related to the conference. 'This is the strangest thing that I've ever been involved in -- it's very weird,' said C. Richard Conti, a professor of cardiology at the University of Florida and editor-in-chief of Clinical Cardiology ..."
- "Oh my God thank you so much for this post. I am going insane with the mass of invitations I am getting from BIT. I have tried all sorts of approaches and no results, the emails keep coming... at least it is soothing to know they do this with many other people... We just need to stop them somehow." Posted by Ana Rita Simoes to Forensic Science, Statistics & the Law at December 20, 2016 at 9:08 PM [← I wish I knew how. For my futile efforts to extricate myself, see The Dalian Letters.]
- "Well, I can confirm having received the multiple spam from Dalian. As for the 'attendees', I do know Mathias Gaertner, and it would seem unlikely that he would go out to Dalian for this sort of thing. Incidentally, the University of Duesseldorf (as quoted) is in Germany, not in Belgium. Hope this helps ..." Posted by Rolf von Roessing, to Forensic Science, Statistics & the Law June 1, 2016 at 2:57 PM
[This posting originally appeared in the defunct Double Helix Law blog in 2011.]
Ever heard of BIT Life Sciences? It is a Chinese company–and spammer extraordinaire–that bills itself as “World Leader of Intelligence Exchange in Life Science” (http://www.bitlifesciences.com/conferences.asp). It promotes, relentlessly, “World Congresses” on, it seems, everything it can think of. Below is a sampling of my correspondence with “Nina,” “Alina,” and others about invitations to speak at several of these events.
Summarizing previous correspondence
Ignoring the correspondence
An odontologist's experience
How about an honorarium?
Okay, here's a title
Maybe if you become a recruiter ...
In fact, we made you a co-chair (without telling you)
But no, Nina's back ...
And after all this ... It's Nina!
The mysterious Emma of the Organizing Commission of ICG-2017 with the email address of firstname.lastname@example.org has been tireless in her spam.I received four copies of the following enticement on 10/23/16 and another six on 12/4/16:
Emma is right about one thing. My recent research is very exciting. It is sad that not all of the small cadre of readers share her opinion.
The ten emails copied above were preceded by one on 8/14/16 that began "Hope you everything goes well" and continued with the text used in five more invitations (two on 8/14/16, two on 9/8/16, and one on 9/12/16) from BIT's CEO himself (although he neglected to mention that role and used urls such as email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, and email@example.com):
These speakers are the same bunch who are keynoting BIT's Annual World Congress of Molecular & Cell Biology (CMCB). One can only hope they are receiving overtime pay for being in two or three conferences at once.
Emma (now using the email firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, and email@example.com) was back with New Year's greetings in 2017:
And then writing from other email addresses, such as
firstname.lastname@example.orgEmma grew less effusive, dropping the "filled with happiness" part:,
Returning to an Emma email address (email@example.com) and hoping that "you still remember me" -- as if I could forget -- "Emma" sent emails on 2/21/17, 2/22/17 (thrice), 2/23/17, 2/15/17, from URLs such as firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, and firstname.lastname@example.org, entitled "Would You Like to Confirm Your Distinguished Speech."
The "hope you remember me" theme continued with emails from Emma (email@example.com), Emma-Nancy (firstname.lastname@example.org), and Emma-Catherine (email@example.com) on 3/19/17 on the "Last Round Speakers Recruiting of ICG-2017." Yet another came from Emma-Marie (firstname.lastname@example.org) on 3/19/17. One can only hope that it truly is the last round.
This posting pertains to:
Part I. 2016 Shanghai conference
Part II. 2017 Macao conference
Part I. 2016 Shanghai conference
A spate of emails started in January 2016 for the "World Gene Convention--2016, Shanghai." The suggested topic? "About Encyclopedia of Forensic Sciences, Interpretation," and then "Beyond uniqueness: the birthday paradox, source attribution and individualization in forensic scienc…."My earlier efforts to persuade what I imagined to be a warehouse of poor, Chinese women typing away at cheap keyboards to please stop emailing me having failed miserably, I adopted the opposite strategy, proposing to speak on chimerical K-DNA.
From: hedy1 [email@example.com]
Let's see if anything has changed
Nope, same old Teresa
OK, here's a title to consider
Apparently, BIT would prefer a talk "about Encyclopedia of Forensic Sciences":
Let's see where this takes us.
Could they have overlooked my proposal?
Maybe the mention of an honorarium discouraged them. I'll try again.
Sadly, no honorarium.
No surprise there, but what about the K-DNA+Encyclopedia paper? Did Teresa ever hear from her organizing committee? Two emails, dated August 2 and then August 10, bearing Teresa's name at the end (but coming from janice <firstname.lastname@example.org>) disappointingly duplicated the earlier one welcoming me as "the chair/speaker in Session 4-3: New Achievements of Forensic DNA while presenting about Beyond uniqueness: the birthday paradox, source attribution and individualization in forensic scienc…."
Ah well, 2017 is coming, and with it, announcements of the 8th WGC will fall like raindrops. Sure enough ...
Sent by elaine <email@example.com> 1/17/17 and again by ann <firstname.lastname@example.org> 2/20/17
Ah well, 2017 is coming, and with it, announcements of the 8th WGC will fall like raindrops. Sure enough ...
Part II. 2017 Macao conference
Sent by elaine <email@example.com> 1/17/17
Teresa-Elaine reiterated the "chair/speaker" invitation on 1/22/17 with another topic. The email came from firstname.lastname@example.org)
Three emails came a day later, ostensibly from Teresa. They were sent by elaine with the URLs email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, and email@example.com. Aside from differences in the spelling of my name, they were identical to the above.
On 2/19/17, another of Teresa's "chair/speaker in Theme 707" invitations came from ann (Wed5@wed-2017.com). Now Teresa-Ann wanted me to speak on an unpublished paper (available on SSRN) that, like the one mentioned in the previous set of emails, had little or nothing to do with "Theme 707: New Achievements of Forensic DNA."
Never-say-die Theresa reappeared on 5/11/17 (twice) as the writer of emails sent by vivian with the URL firstname.lastname@example.org and vivian (email@example.com). These implored me to give "a tentative reply" to the repeated invitation (she's good at that) to "be the chair/speaker in Theme 707: New Achievements of Forensic while presenting about Forensic." Theresa-Vivian-Flora and Theresa-Vivian-Irene apologized "for the inconvenience if the letter disturbed you more than once."
Teresa made two more appearances on the signature line of an email of 7/14/17 (one to Dr. David H. Kaye coming from Nina with the URL firstname.lastname@example.org and the other to Dr. D.H. Kaye from nina with the URL email@example.com). She sent the "Cordial Invitation to Chair/Speakers for the WGC-2017, Macao." Theresa-Nina-Janet said that she too "would like to welcome you to be the chair/speaker in Theme 707: New Achievements of Forensic." Generous to a fault, she added that "[i]f the suggested thematic session is not your current focused core, you may look through the whole sessions and transfer another one that fit your interest ... ." And then she touted the "dynamic scientific program" and the "wonderful experience in Macao ... famous for ... hotel." She advised (yet again):
○ Depending on the warmly support and good suggestions from all of the participants, we are confident in organizing WGC-2017 ... .
○ WGC-2017 ... aims to provide a platform ... to discuss latest hot researches ... The business & academic experts who are from home and abroad will give excellent speeches.
○ We expect your precious comments or suggestions; also your reference to other speakers will be highly appreciated.
BIT's "high importance" email of 3/8/16 to "Dr.David B. Kay" reported that "It is nice to announce that The 6th Annual Symposium of Drug Delivery Systems (SDDS-2016) will be held ... in Nanjing, China. It is a dedicated event for global medical scientists. [W]e cordially welcome you to deliver a speech in Symposium 5: Smart Nanomedicine. ... If you have any precious suggestions ... , please reply this email and send your speech title to us at your earliest convenient." Notwithstanding the fact that I have no training in medicine and drug discovery, my "participation will accelerate and promote the cognition of Drug Delivery sciences in the World!" As if that were not enough, there will be "Industrial Promotion, Appoint People by Abilities, Culture Agglomeration."
A followup email of 7/20/16 from Ms. Grace Chen, Program Coordinator in Dalian, explained that she was "pleased to extend the invitation to you again. We are cordially welcome you to deliver a speech in Symposium 5: Smart Nanomedicine. Your participation will accelerate and promote the cognition of Drug Delivery sciences in the World!" The "confirmed companies and academia organizations" include Harvard, Michigan, UCLA, USC, USD, Cornell, Iowa, Minnesota, Ohio State, and Washington. Certainly, the faculty at these institutions selected to deliver speeches can do more to promote cognition than I.
Friday, December 23, 2016
This WORLD CONGRESS (the entrepreneurs of the Middle Kingdom think big) "will provide a platform for participants to discuss the unsolved mysteries in molecular & cell biology. The organizing committee of CMCB-2017 devotes itself to supply the most cutting-edge technology information to you. We aim to bring together Experts from academic, industrial professionals and key-decision makers to present their new achievement on their research." As befits a scientific conference, the website promises (12/23/16) that "[d]uring the congress, we will set up a series of activities such as Scientific Program ... ."
It will be a busy time, as BIT's 2nd Annual International Congress of Genetics (ICG-2017) is scheduled at the same time and place.
The "honorary chair" is "Dr. Yuxin Yin, Dean & Director, Peking University, China." "Keynote speakers" are "Dr. Martin Banwell, Professor, Australian National University, Australia; Dr. Christian Patermann, Former Director, European Commission, Germany; Dr. Robert S. Plumb, Professor, Imperial College, London, UK; and Dr. Dongping Zhong, Professor, Ohio State University, USA."
Seems like they might be slipping in the big name department, though. Last year, they had Dr. Arieh Warshel, Distinguished Professor, University of Southern California, USA, Nobel Prize Laureate in Chemistry, and others who "gave their wonderful speeches at keynote forum and are warmly received."
But there is hope. After all, their email says that they want me!
- 12/22/16, 12/23/16: Dear Dr. David H. Kaye, Warm greetings and best wishes for Christmas and the New Year. We are pleased to announce that the 7th Annual World Congress of Molecular & Cell Biology (CMCB-2017) will be held during April 25-27, 2017 at Xi'an, China. Until now, we have confirmed nearly 300 speakers to give wonderful speeches in CMCB-2017, meanwhile, together with other 2 parallel congresses, about 800 of outstanding international scientists in related field will attend the conference and show their latest progress, we genuinely hope you will be able to join us together. If you are interested in, please email to firstname.lastname@example.org, thanks. Look forward to hearing from you. Kind regards, Judy [who provides no affiliation or address, and no mention of BIT, but who emailed from email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, judy1991@world-cmcb2016, judy1992@world-cmcb2016].
The International Congress of Forensics & Police Tech Expo is another source of unending solicitations for "keynote" speakers who have the honor of paying registration fees and inflated hotel prices. The theme of the Forensics & Police Tech Expo varies from "Collaboration, Innovation and Identification: Gate Way to a Safer Tomorrow" to "Peaceful China, Happy Life." The Chinglish emails have some nicely turned phrases.
To see whether BIT and its conference committee had the slightest knowledge of forensic science, I responded to one email with a proposal to speak on K-DNA, a chimeric form of the molecule discovered through alchemy. The paper quickly was added to the program. I then explained that I could not present this important discovery because late-breaking experiments required some revisions.
An email of 5/24/16 is at least the third to announce "BIT’s 3rd International Congress of Forensics & Police Tech Expo 2016, which will be held during October 27-29, 2016 at International Conference Center, Dalian, China" and "will cover the Interdisciplinary Symposium, workshops, training courses, and posters which will highlight the advances in technology that have transformed forensic science and technology into law enforcement practice. ... The Plenary Session will invite a distinguished international panel including Dr. Henry Lee and many others to talk about the impact of recent forensic scientific and technological breakthroughs around the world. ... we appreciate your advices on: 1. Which track you are interested in; 2. What topic you will talk about? Would you please forward us the potential speech title and brief introduction to the topic? ... We look forward to seeing you all there."
It was followed by this one on 6/13, 6/15, 7/3/16, and 7/22/16 (excerpts): "How are you doing? I am Cherry, the Program Coordinator ... . I am writing the letter to make sure if you have received my letter previously, it is about the conference: WCF-2016 which will be held during October 27-29, 2016 ... . Maybe there some problems with my mailbox ... . I am writing again to cordially welcome you to give a speech. Now we have invited some distinguished experts including Dr. Henry Lee and Dr. John Zheng Wang and many others ... . In the past two congresses, we have invited more than 300 worldwide leading experts, famous police officers, and law practitioners ..."
But then I fell back to Cherry's usual mailing list on 8/29/16, with a reminder of "a great opportunity for our friends and forensic colleagues from around the world to share ideas, case studies, briefing current cutting-edge technologies which could implant into forensic investigation and analysis." Furthermore, "Now the speech positions are still available" (even though Henry Lee and others "confirmed their participations as followings").
But that's not all. The same day, the indefatigable Cherry sent an otherwise identical email inviting me to chair yet another section: "On behalf of the Executive Committee Office, we warmly welcome you as the Session Chair and Speaker of Session 7-2: Forensic Anthropology and Sociology under Track 7: Interdisciplinary Forensic Program, as well as a (Scientific Advisory Board) SAB member of the conference."
Dalian -- Not Shenyang -- 2017
But wait! WCF-17 is back in Dalian. I hope the "extensive efforts" of the "Police Association of Liaoning Province and the section leaders" in Shenyang did not go to waste. To check, I asked Ms. Cherry about the unexplained change in the conference site. She explained (3/16/17) that "[d]ue to some reasons of the local government, we changed the hosting organization and supporting organization. The new hosting organization is World High-Tech Society and China Council for the Promotion of International Trade Dalian Sub-Council." The same renowned speakers will be in Dalian, and now I am slated for toxicology and pathology rather than biology and DNA analysis, and sociology and anthropology. It is nice to be so versatile.
But wait! I am back as a recruit for the Forensic Biology and DNA Analysis session:
Now I am on the "InterdisciplinaryForensic Program":
In September, I am "confirmed to be session speaker"
Paralleling the proliferation of journals of ill repute is the globalization of the marketing of academic conferences. This blog identifies what seem to be shady sellers based solely on the spam I receive. It also includes some correspondence that is vaguely entertaining. My list of the purveyors is here.
- John D. Bowman, Predatory Publishing, Questionable Peer Review, and Fraudulent Conferences, Am J Pharm Educ. 2014 Dec 15; 78(10): 176, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4315198/
- Melanie Newman, Round Table Invitees Confused by Oxford 'Link', Times Higher Education, Mar. 12, 2009, https://www.timeshighereducation.com/news/round-table-invitees-confused-by-oxford-link/405766.article
- Dana Roth & Donna Wrublewski, Conferences - spammed and ??, http://libguides.caltech.edu/content.php?pid=134993