2013 The Future of Altmetrics

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What is next for measuring journal quality? The current system is limping along in the new digital environment, but cultures in the academy need to change, technology needs to change, and a determination about the level of human intervention needs to change. It will be important to review and vet new metrics as they arise, and to learn how impactful an article or journal is beyond what is typically accepted, such as acceptance rates and impact factor numbers. This is particularly important for niche journals, whose numbers may be low, but whose work is critically important to a very small field of scholars. Panelists will discuss how university presses can benefit from applying altmetrics to their business, even as the community continues to shape standards and best practices.

Co-Chairs: Katherine Purple, Production Editor, Purdue University Press

Jill Rodgers, Marketing Manager, MIT Press

Panelists: Euan Addie, Founder, Altmetric.com

Gregg Gordon, President & CEO, Social Science Research Network (SSRN)

Wendy Queen, Associate Director, Project Muse/Johns Hopkins University Press

Please feel free to add notes or responses to the session in this section. You can also post presentation files. Find out how.

Gregg Gordon, SSRN

  • Note distinction between article-level metrics (usage, citations, social bookmarking) and ALTMETRICS (based on the social web for analysis)
  • altmetrics is still new; what we don't know, we don't know
  • how do we allow niche journals to be found amongst all the journals out there?

Euan Addie, Altmetric.com

  • almetrics track social media, mainstream media mentions, reference managers
  • almetrics provide quick, clear evidence that a paper has reached its intended audience
    • e.g. anti-malarial paper was spread via the web to international health organizations, NGOs, and activists on the ground in Kenya working to fight the spread of malaria; altmetrics is able to track that spread
  • how do publishers fit in?
    • publishers hold and share the metadata for the content
    • altmetric.com and other altmetrics systems are dependent on clean (and existing) DOIs, need stable identifiers
    • publishers should make sure altmetric.com is tracking your journals
  • reach of altmetrics continues to grow; gaining information like whose research is driving world bank policy and which journals are cited by NHS guidelines

Wendy Queen, Project MUSE

  • top referrers to MUSE: historically and mostly Google; recently Wikipedia and Facebook climbing the rankings
  • use of AddThis and social bookmarking features provide analytics data back to MUSE
  • MUSE recently announced partnership with HighWire; additional pairings with ImpactStory.com and Altmetric.com
  • we're still in the "Wild West" of altmetrics; publishers encouraged to get their feet wet and determine how they want to use the tools/data


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