In Copenhagen this week Richard Smith met Dr Twitter. In London I met Mr LinkedIn. Mark Williams (#mr_linkedin) describes himself as the UK’s leading independent LinkedIn trainer, helping individuals and organisations make the most of the professional network that now boasts 185m members worldwide, including 34,000 doctors at the last count. I went along to ask Williams, who was addressing an audience of publishers, why so many of my connections have started endorsing me lately. More about that later.
But first, some figures. Every second two people join LinkedIn, which was launched by Reid Hoffman in 2003 and is now a vibrant community where make connections, get business, undertake research, and join groups of likeminded professionals. More than half of its members live in the US. India is the second most popular country. It has 6m more members than the UK, but London is the most active city after San Francisco and New York, and Brazil is the fastest growing country. more…
26 Oct, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower
Article-level metrics (or ALMs) were a hot topic at this week’s HighWire publisher meeting in Washington. (Highwire hosts both the BMJ and its stable of 42 specialist journals). From SAGE to eLife, publishers seem sold on the benefits of displaying additional context to articles, thereby enabling readers to assess their impact. These statistics range from traditional indicators, such as usage statistics and citations, to alternative values (or altmetrics) like mentions on Twitter and in the mainstream media.
So, what services are available to bring this information together in one simple interface? There are quite a few contenders in this area, including Plum Analytics, PLoS Article-Level Metrics application, Science Card, CitedIn and ReaderMeter. One system in particular has received a good deal of attention in the past few weeks; ImpactStory, a relaunched version of total-impact. It’s a free, open-source webapp that’s been built with financial help from the Sloan Foundation (and others) “to help researchers uncover data-driven stories about their broader impacts”.
19 Oct, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower
Publishers face authorship issues on a daily basis. Who should be listed as an author? How can an author role be appropriately acknowledged? How can we discern author responsibility? Linked to this is conflict-of-interest reporting: who needs to report what, and in what context?
A registry that will grant scientists a unique identifying number, helping readers of the literature to distinguish between authors with similar names, launched this week. ORCID, the Open Researcher and Contributor ID, seeks to remedy the systemic name ambiguity problems seen in scholarly research by assigning unique identifiers linkable to an individual’s research output.more…
Eighteen months ago a colleague and I were looking at the online and print BMJ with a view to discovering the ratio of UK to international content. At the time planned changes to both the NHS in England and the US healthcare system were generating a lot of news, comment, and debate.
Colleagues were spending increasing amounts of time in the US, India, and elsewhere, attending conferences and participating in workshops, yielding in rise in article submissions from these countries. This was helped in part by the decision to recruit a European research editor, based in the Netherlands, to complement a similar post based in the US. We also have an education editor based in Sydney. more…
28 Sep, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower
The “publish or perish” model of the academic world has followed a similar pattern since the middle of the last century. It generally takes around seven years from the conception of an idea, to the publishing of a paper, to the point where a critical mass of citations are formally gathered around it.
“Clearly the world moves much, much faster than that now,” argues Andrea Michalek, co-founder of startup Plum Analytics, with researchers posting slides online about their work even before it’s published, and tweets mentioning those discussions and linking back to the content. “All this data exhaust is happening in advance of researchers’ getting those cited-by counts,” she says, and once a paper is published, the opportunities for online references to it grow.
21 Sep, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower
Structuring web content by topic or theme is not radically new. Over the past decade, tagging has been the most common method of creating organisation online. ‘Web 2.0′ companies like Delicious and Flickr built their entire businesses around user-generated tagging of content (a.k.a folksonomies) but topic pages never really reached their potential. This is evident in the chronological organisation of academic material and also in three of the biggest online services ; Facebook, Twitter and Blogs.
However, internet savants are predicting a big change in web publishing, which involves a move towards topic organisation. Medium, a new site launched by Twitter co-founders Ev Williams and Biz Stone, organises its content into pages. Each page is called a “collection” and is structured around a single topic, event or theme. As discussed above, people have consumed content largely on a chronological basis until now. Services like Medium, however, along with the more established Pinterest, are attempting to change that.
6 Sep, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower
With more and more social networks appearing on a daily basis, many find themselves with multiple sites to manage and not enough time to do so. Enter RebelMouse, a self-proclaimed “social front page”, that pulls in user content from social sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
At first glance, RebelMouse looks like a digital newspaper, hosted on Pinterest. After you spend some time on the site, however, it becomes clear that there is more to it than that. Founded by Paul Berry, the former CTO of The Huffington Post, RebelMouse has already signed up 32,000 users since it’s launch in June.
30 Aug, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower
A common goal of academics is to read all relevant publications within a particular field of expertise. Locating these materials is a challenge (to say the least) and the task is becoming more and more difficult as the number of papers published annually increases year-on-year.
Earlier this month, changes were made to Google Scholar to encourage the serendipitous discovery of new research during a scholar’s routine activity. The new service, Scholar Updates, conducts a search on the author’s behalf and provides a list of recommended publications. It builds upon existing research alerts offered by Google Scholar, similar in nature to those of ISI Web of Science and other academic databases.
22 Aug, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower
ResearchGate, a Q&A site that soon became known as ‘Facebook for scientists‘, has announced its intention to function as a publishing platform for scientific researchers and offer an alternative measure of reputation in that community.
Started in 2008 with few features, ResearchGate was reshaped with feedback from scientists and has attracted several million dollars in venture capital from some of the original investors of Twitter, eBay and Facebook. According to the website, more than 1.9 million scientists currently share papers, publish data and engage in discussions on its platform. Now an ‘RG Score’ has been designed to make those interactions visible and quantifiable.
9 Aug, 12 | by Claire Bower, Digital Comms Manager, @clairebower
Mendeley, the free reference manager and academic social network, has released an Institutional Edition for research and impact analysis and signed up a number of leading academic establishments along the way.
Announced on Monday, Mendeley Institutional Edition (MIE) is a module developed to give librarians and heads of library insight into the way researchers work and use their library collection at document level. By offering the MIE to their end users, institutions can seemingly stimulate their productivity and gain real-time feedback on the usage of library content.