Not specific scams, per se, but the idea of scams. Especially those directed towards writers. Wanting to be a published author is a burning need. Like any other artistic endeavor, writers want to see their name on their work and see their work purchased by others who appreciate it.
This is where scam artists come in. With the current economy I’m afraid we’ll see even more crop up. Any person can hang a shingle (start a website) and say they are an agent or an e-publisher. Knowledge is an author’s best defense. Talk to other writers on loops. Join organizations like RWA. Do research. Not knowing is not an excuse. Google is your best friend.
POD (Print On Demand) is not a scam. Just know what you are getting into. There is no marketing except whatever you do. But, again with the current economy, sometimes this is true with other publishers as well. The plus of the big publishers is distribution. Sometimes what you write is a small niche and going POD makes sense. Some people do a book just for family and friends and POD is for them too.
As you are checking out agents; big and small, and publishers; NY-based, small press, e-publishers, and POD, ask yourself what you want for this book and for yourself and your career. Don’t get taken for a ride. Know what you want and how to get it.