Animal employment is surprisingly common. IIRC there's a cat in Japan that is a railway station master, another cat serves as a town mayor in America, a monkey was once signal operator for a railroad in India and a physics professor once put his dog on a paper because the editor complained about using the royal we despite there only being one author.
I'll look up sources when I'm not on my phone.
Before passing on a couple of years ago, Tama trained Nitama to perform her duties, so the station remains in good paws.
 - [ http://www.economist.com/news/obituary/21656623-tama-station... ]
Also: Laika, the cosmonaut https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laika
And elsewhere in order Carnivora, an army corporal: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wojtek_(bear)
Really, though, the problem here is that the "publish or perish" metric for careers has created demand for willing outlets. It's interesting that this can create circular authenticity, as was the case here. This seems like it also might be a driving factor behind the issues reproducing experiments--things can get published without proper peer review if the journals aren't really in it for the science.
Unfortunately, I don't think there is a magic bullet here, since it's a product of a lot of disconnected incentive systems coming together to accidentally create a monster.
"Rolf Anderberg of the Göteborgs-Posten wrote, "Brassau paints with powerful strokes, but also with clear determination. His brush strokes twist with furious fastidiousness. Pierre is an artist who performs with the delicacy of a ballet dancer.""
The problem was that Mr. Brassau was a chimpanzee.
Still, we need more dogs like Dr. Olivia Doll, to call mediocre publishing for what it is.
"Arf", she said*
* Frank Zappa lyric
Taking a stand on principle, even when under criticism. That's leadership material, right there.
Just as a reminder, we don't have to put up with this. There is an alternative:
There are also some that are a major source of support for professional organizations.
All I've heard is that they take free labor and add their brand to it so they can charge to distribute it.
Having said that, the requirements to publish in a good journal are quite high - reviewers will point out mistakes, demand more data if yours is not convincing enough, point out related literature that you might have missed, and so on. The journal will also check that the reviewers are not simply friends of the author. It can take about a year to get a journal article published.
After seeing some of the stuff that gets submitted (and rejected), I don't feel I can trust research that has not been peer reviewed. A good journal ensures that a minimum standard of quality is met, and that I'm not building my research on lies and fluff pieces.
Non-publishing: Some of these journals provide genuine monetary support for their sponsoring society, which then go to fund travel scholarships, put on conferences, etc.
Publishing: This will depend highly on the field - a lot of people who assert that journals add nothing come from fields where LaTeX is the standard format journals are submitted in, so journals don't do much in the way of formatting.
But this is not all fields. Most of my papers (I'm in a Word-standard field) get page layout, and a page layout I find significantly more pleasant to read than most LaTeX documents.
I've also had my papers get fairly strong copy editing, and I already carefully copy edit my papers. I've seen some other papers that have definitely been much improved by the editorial staff.
In at least one paper, I had a figure redone by them in the journal's style.
Dr. Wuffet, legendary CEO - the management lectures