I am surprised by the fact that a journal published an article that I have had in arXiv for a few months. The date of publication is after the date that I posted on arXiv. The submission date in the journal is not mentioned. What procedures I should follow?

Some information to clarify the situation:

  • The article published in the journal is a total plagiarism. They changed only the name of the title.

  • The article is published in a journal in the name of other authors.

  • My article (that is in arXiv) is already accepted in another journal (but not yet online) and the date of acceptance is before the date of publication of that of the other authors.

  • 4
    Do I understand right that you never submitted the paper to the journal or authorized publication (for example, some Creative Commons licenses would allow publication with no notice or additional permission), and that no coauthor did so either? Did the journal article appear under your name, or was it plagiarized? Oct 21, 2014 at 23:59
  • 3
    the published article has you as a sole author or another guy? is it a clone of your arxiv paper? is it a peer reviewed journal or scam one? Also, I think its good to name the publisher of the journal.
    – seteropere
    Oct 22, 2014 at 0:00
  • 5
    Is the journal you found your arxiv article in a reputable journal, or is it a crap journal?
    – Tommy
    Oct 22, 2014 at 2:16
  • 6
    Did you Google the "authors" of the stolen paper? Are these real people?
    – Mad Jack
    Oct 22, 2014 at 3:03
  • 4
    @seteropere: No, please don’t. See this meta discussion.
    – Wrzlprmft
    Oct 22, 2014 at 7:18

2 Answers 2


I believe the first thing you need to do is to contact and email the editor in chief of that journal and give him/her a link to your arxiv paper.

He/She a long with the editorial board have to retract the article (hopefully, with a big red X stating that the authors have plagiarised citing your arxiv work).

  • 7
    This answer assumes that OP is dealing with a journal that would care enough to fix the problem. Suppose that the journal is not reputable and the "authors" don't exist. What should OP do then?
    – Mad Jack
    Oct 22, 2014 at 3:00
  • 14
    @MadJack I do not know. Unless stating otherwise, I would believe the journal editor would deal with this seriously and retract the paper. There is no reason to believe the opposite.
    – seteropere
    Oct 22, 2014 at 3:06
  • 2
    On the plus side, if the journal is disreputable, the plagiarizing authors are unlikely to gain from their misdeeds, since publication in that journal will not increase their academic reputation.
    – BrenBarn
    Oct 22, 2014 at 4:13
  • 14
    @MadJack in that case the OP could contact the publisher of the journal that did accept the paper. Publishers are known to file copyright infringement claims against others who redistribute their articles after publication. If the OP has signed a copyright transfer agreement, perhaps the same process could be invoked even though the article has not actually appeared in print yet.
    – David Z
    Oct 22, 2014 at 4:54
  • 3
    @MadJack: In that case OP should read this question. Oct 22, 2014 at 6:09

Copyright Status

Perhaps you gave away your copyright.

Review your copyright status on arXiv. Copyright status can vary as described here including public domain.

  • 20
    Even then, publishing the paper under one’s own name would be academic misconduct and should violate any reputable journal’s guidelines.
    – Wrzlprmft
    Oct 22, 2014 at 18:52
  • 1
    @Wrzlprmft Yes, but the copyright angle offers legal options beyond depending on the honor of a journal’s editors. Oct 22, 2014 at 19:26
  • 6
    My comment wasn’t critique, just supplementary information.
    – Wrzlprmft
    Oct 22, 2014 at 19:36

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