I found a previously undetected open access publisher with a website, blog, youtube channel, and even a twitter feed called intechweb.org. The also have a selection of open access textbooks, including one on medical robotics.
I went to their web site and confirmed that the publisher used a gold open access model of an author fee for chapter or article submissions. The medical robotics textbook has 37 chapters, showing no particular organizational principle and containing an editorial introduction of only 273 words. The editor has no record of scholarly publishing in standard biomedical databases.
It did not take long with light reviewing to see that many of the rather nice images of robotic surgery actually came from the Intuitive Surgical Product Image Gallery for the da Vinci® Si™ System. Why not the best images,especially when there is no cost involved?
The question of open access publisher credibility begins with something really basic: enough transparency to see a person called a publisher or editor-in-chief. When the about page or the contact page does not suggest a specific human being behind the brand, a little bell starts to go off. Then you find some really unflattering chatter on FriendFeed, and you have a nomination for openbiomed predatory status. Then you look at the new office, which seems both too quiet and too posed, and you reach the threshold for the predatory open access seal of approval.
Stay away, and imagine this…for the medical robotics textbook, I imagine that the creators of this shell took approximately $22,200 US at $600 per submitted chapter, according to the really unflattering chatter on FriendFeed. If you believe their statistics, it was downloaded 1979 times , but the publishers probable income for one of hundreds of titles is…well…predatory.