Frequently Asked Questions

PoPETs has been initiated by the PET Board as a way to improve reviewing and publication quality while retaining the highly successful PETS community event. PETS/PoPETs has been modeled on the success of other conference/journal hybrids such as JETS and PVLDB. We have copied and modified the PVLDB and JETS FAQs liberally.

  1. What is PoPETs?
    PoPETs is a scholarly journal for timely research papers on privacy that brings journal-style reviewing to conference-style papers and seeks to combine the benefits of fast conference turnaround with consistent journal reviewing.
  2. How will PoPETs be published?
    PoPETs will be published as an Open Access Journal by De Gruyter Open, the world's second largest publisher of Open Access academic content, and part of the De Gruyter group, which has over 260 years of publishing history.
  3. Is PoPETs a journal then?
    PoPETs is a fully refereed journal. You may include PoPETs publications in the "journal publications" section of your CV, if you split out your journal and conference publications. Note that PoPETs is published only in electronic form.
  4. What will happen to PETS (the symposium/conference)?
    The PETS event will stay pretty much the same in spirit, and possibly grow in size with the reformed review process. Beginning Nov 2014 a journal-style review will be required to obtain a PETS presentation slot. Papers accepted for PoPETs by May 15 must be presented at that year's PETS.
  5. Does PoPETs have an ISSN?
    PoPETs has been assigned ISSN 2299-0984.
  6. Is PoPETs indexed or ranked in any way?
    The organizations that produce journal impact rankings can take several years to add any given journal to their rankings, and we will endeavor to include PoPETs in these rankings. Furthermore, PoPETs builds on the scholarly tradition of PETS, which was first held in 2000 (as the PET Workshop). Of course, major search engines like Google Scholar will pick up our publications immediately, and our open-access policies make it easier for others to read and cite your work. You may also refer to the composition of the editorial board and program committee. We intend PoPETs to be the premiere venue for scholarship in the area of privacy. The rankings and impact factors will be high. De Gruyter Open has arrangements with various abstracting and indexing services and assists with applying for indexing with Thomson Scientific.
  7. What is PoPETs's copyright policy?
    Authors retain copyright of their work. Papers will be published under an open-access policy using a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs license.
  8. What is the benefit of the several deadlines per year that PoPETs provides, compared to having a traditional annual conference deadline?
    From an author's viewpoint, you can submit to the next regular deadline, whenever your results are ready. If you miss the Feb deadline, closest to PETS, you can still submit long before the next year's deadline. Newly accepted papers will appear online at regular intervals each year. Regardless of when your paper appears, you will be invited to present your results at the subsequent PETS. From a reviewer's viewpoint, the reviewing load is spread across the year, smoothing some of the burstiness associated with a traditional annual conference. The regular deadlines keep things moving faster than the slow pace of many traditional journals.
  9. What will be the turnaround time for PoPETs?
    PoPETs is structured with submission deadlines every 3 months. After each deadline, a decision will be provided approximately 2 months later. If your paper is "accepted conditionally with minor revisions," then your paper will be assigned a shepherd and we will expect you to submit a camera-ready version within one month, including obtaining acceptance from the shepherd. If the editors believe your paper requires more substantial revisions a "major revisions needed" decision will be made. In this case you will be expected to resubmit your revision to any of the two subsequent deadlines along with a Summary of Changes document. The editors will endeavor to assign the same reviewers to major revisions of a given manuscript, allowing for editorial continuity. Rejected papers may be resubmitted if they are revised substantially as suggested by the editors. A cover letter must explain how the authors have substantially revised their paper.
  10. What is the cutoff date for making next year's PETS?
    There will be several deadlines each year for PoPETs. The Feb deadline is the latest that will allow for a paper to appear at the same year's PETS. Submissions for later deadlines will appear at the following year's conference. Of course, accepted papers will still appear online as soon as the regular journal publication occurs.
  11. We would like to submit a paper based on something previously published elsewhere (e.g., in a computer science workshop). Is that OK?
    A paper submitted to PoPETs must present original work not described in any prior publication that is more than 4 double-column ACM conference-style pages in length. A prior publication is a paper that has been accepted for presentation at a refereed conference or workshop with proceedings, or an article that has been accepted for publication in a refereed journal. If a PoPETs submission has overlap with a prior publication, the submission must cite the prior publication, along with all other relevant published work, even if this prior publication is at or below the 4-page length threshold.
  12. If PoPETs is a journal, can I still publish extended versions of PoPETs papers in traditional journals?
    This will depend on the particular journal's policies about overlap with prior published work and the additional contributions of the extended version. Some journals have a "25% new content rule" whereas other journals require previously unpublished work. Authors of extended versions should consult the submission guidelines for other journals.
  13. What is the benefit of the journal-style reviewing of PoPETs, compared to traditional computer science conference reviewing?
    Many good papers have some technical shortcomings that prevent them from being accepted for conferences when submitted the first time. Some computer science conferences offer an author-reply phase during which can authors can clarify misunderstandings, but it is limited regarding both the length and detail of the reply and the time for addressing reviewers' concerns. When a conference like PETS occurs only once a year, it seems a shame to potentially have authors wait an entire year to get another shot at publication. The regular deadlines for PoPETs help bring these papers into publication faster.

    Furthermore, when resubmitting an improved paper to a new conference, you are usually faced with a new set of reviewers who may raise different concerns. In contrast, PoPETs' journal-style reviewing allows for revision of your work within a reasonable timeframe and the opportunity for a consistent technical dialog between the author and reviewers across manuscript revisions.
  14. Who will review my paper?
    Generally speaking, every paper will be subject to double-blind review by three or more members of the PoPETs editorial board. We may also seek external reviewers from time to time, but our intent is that editorial board members will do the bulk of the reviewing themselves. In this respect, PoPETs acts more like some computer science conferences and less like a journal. It also helps us keep the process running on schedule.
  15. Does PoPETs provide editorial or other production support for authors?
    PoPETs ultimately expects its authors to submit camera-ready manuscripts. Authors who need professional copy-editing or other production services should seek outside assistance before submitting to PoPETs.
  16. What will happen to the PETS program committee and program chairs?
    The PETS program committee is also the PoPETs Editorial Board. The PETS Program Co-Chairs are also the PoPETs Co-Editors-in-Chief.
  17. How does governance for PETS and PoPETs function?
    The PET Board is responsible for guiding PETS, including PoPETs, by selecting each year's General Chair and the Program Co-Chairs (who also serve as the PoPETs Co-Editors-in-Chief), as well as overseeing the operations of both the symposium and the journal. The Co-Editors-in-Chief have the primary responsibility for their issues of PoPETs and the program of PETS.
  18. How does PoPETs compare to other hybrid journal/conferences like JETS and PVLDB?
    This FAQ was borrowed and modified from the PVLDB and JETS FAQs and the structure of PoPETs borrows liberally from PVLDB and JETS. PVLDB accepts submissions on a monthly basis whereas JETS has less frequent but regular deadlines. PoPETs will have regular bi-monthly deadlines, with the exception of one deadline (in June) being skipped to prepare for the PETS event.