J Mar Channels


A second statement about the legitimacy of articles, from the previous editor-in-chief

J Mar Channels – Once Again
January 30, 2020


The purpose of this post is to again call attention (see my previous ELMAR post of September 9, 2019, “J Mar Channels – Once Again”) to articles published online and in Volume 25, Issue 1-2 and Issue 3 that are in my view illegitimate and in violation of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) Code of Conduct for Journal Publishers of which Taylor & Francis, publisher of the Journal of Marketing Channels and a subsidiary of Routledge, is a party to.

It will allow me to make academic and other potential users of these materials aware of their questionable provenance in that they have been posted on the Journal of Marketing Channels website and now, regrettably, are in print despite my notification to the publisher via e-mail August 29, 2019 through Tracy Roberts, Publishing Director (HSS), Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group (Tracy.Roberts@tandf.co.uk) that there are ethical and other problems with journal editorial processes that require the retraction of articles as detailed below.

I have indeed accepted these articles for publication after peer review. However, they were then copy edited and typeset unilaterally by Taylor & Francis without the participation of an academic editor. Give that article proofs were often returned to me – even after I had professionally edited and formatted them – with more than 100 induced errors, I have no confidence that the final version of these papers are sound. Supervision of an academic editor is essential to ensure that what is being published is technically and theoretically faithful to the author’s intent.

There is a new academic editor unilaterally appointed by Taylor & Francis seemingly without the involvement or approval of the Journal’s Editorial Review Board on or about October 17, 2019 according to an ELMAR post October 20, 2019 (“J Mar Channels”) from Laura Raines. Papers processed and posted online after that date may have had academic supervision.

However, all articles published in Volume 25, Issue 1-2 are shown on the Journal website as published online August 19 or 20 (2019). Similarly, Issue 3 published online dates are August 19 or 20, September 12, and September 19 (2019). Therefore, there was no academic editor then on duty to oversee the correctness of production from an academic perspective.

Similarly, Volume 26, Issue 1 (dated 2020), contains articles identified as published online August 19 or 20 (2019). I did accept papers with these dates, but again they could not have been published with academic oversight as there was no academic editor in August.

As noted previously, with no academic editor in place to supervise the current publication, the tacit agreement between the publisher and academia that the content of academic journals is always approved by an academic editor BEFORE publication online or in print is violated. This essentially makes these articles and any associated issues illegitimate. These articles should have been retracted until such time as they could be properly published under the supervision of a qualified academic editor and certainly before they entered the research record as printed, bound documents.

Regarding the publisher’s ethical responsibility to protect the integrity of the research record, Volume 25, Issue 1-2, is dated April 2018 with a copyright date of 2018 on the inside front cover. Volume 25, Issue 3 is similarly dated July 2018 and Issue 4, October 2018. The article citation dates are all 2018 and all outside covers show Volume 25 as appearing in 2018. However, these issues first appeared online in 2019, indicating that the publication date and any reference or citation for these articles is patently false. Taylor & Francis appears to have falsified the publication and research record for these articles in the Journal of Marketing Channels.

In my view, as these journal issues and associated articles have been produced improperly with a corrupted research record and not retracted as requested, they should not be referenced, cited, or considered for academic credit of any type.



Neil C. Herndon, Ph.D.
Previously Editor-in-Chief (2013 – 2019), Journal of Marketing Channels