Academic journals with a presence on Twitter are more widely disseminated and receive a higher number of citations

Previous research has shown that researchers’ active participation on Twitter can be a powerful way of promoting and disseminating academic outputs and improving the prospects of increased citations. But does the same hold true for the presence of academic journals on Twitter? José Luis Ortega examined the role of 350 scholarly journals, analysing how their articles were tweeted and cited. Findings reveal that articles from those journals that have their own individual Twitter handle are more tweeted about than articles from journals whose only Twitter presence is through a scientific society or publisher account. Articles published in journals with any sort of Twitter presence also receive more citations than those published in journals with no Twitter presence.

Twitter for Research: Tweet Your Research to Succeed!

TwitterAbout 15 years ago, a social media network called “Friendster” launched. It was a forum where people of similar interests could communicate and share ideas. Since then, networking sites have blossomed. In 2003, “LinkedIn” launched and now it has nearly 300 million members. During that same period, other social media sites, such as “Facebook” and “Twitter,”…
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Bloomberg’s new Twitter network will launch on Dec. 18 with six founding partners: Goldman Sachs, Infiniti, TD Ameritrade, CA Technologies, AT&T and CME Group — and more are in the works. The average price point of the partnerships is $1.5 to 3 million, leading to Bloomberg securing eight figures in revenue in its first year. Why it matters: The investment is a part of a major digital push by the company to stay competitive in an era where Google and Facebook have tightened their grip on the digital advertising market. The details: Bloomberg is hiring around 50 people to staff the new project, which will exist as the first 24-hour social news network on Twitter.

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Podcast: The evolution of audio, Facebook’s political reckoning, and civil war at the WSJ

THIS WEEK ON THE KICKER, Meg speaks with Glynn Washington about the evolution of his podcast Snap Judgment, as well as the importance of voice in audio. Then, Pete and Tow Editor Nausicaa Renner discuss a tense set of hearings on Capitol Hill for Facebook, Google, and Twitter. Finally, Senior Editor Christie Chisholm and Delacorte Fellow Karen K. Ho join the pod to talk about the media news of the week.

Social media crackdowns at the Times and Journal will backfire

The relationship between media outlets and social platforms like Twitter has always been tense. On some level, publishers know they have to be on social media, because that’s where the news happens, and it’s also where content gets shared—but at the same time, they are afraid of what might happen if reporters and editors speak […]

The Twitter Effect

The session started with a presentation from Brett Butliere, who asked: Are more tweeted papers and topics also more contradicted? Brett and his collaborators had conducted a study of over 160,000 tweets about research outputs to determine whether or not research that promoted controversy resulted in more attention – a trend that he noted could potentially be seen in the Altmetric Top 100 lists every year. Amongst the topics most often Tweeted about were things like the dinosaurs and obesity – certainly areas that many people have opinions on. The research team concluded that there was some statistical evidence of their hypothesis, but noted that more research would need to be done and that different methods could also be explored.

Next up was Zohreh Zahedi, who was presenting her research that looks at the imbalanced use of social media across different countries. Zohreh conducted a cross-country analysis of Twitter uses to see whether tweeting about research was ore prevalent in certain countries, and the extent to which people tweeted about authors with affiliations in the same country as the tweeter themselves. Zohreh found some fairly significant differences: although an increasing amount of research comes from China, Russia, South America and India, the majority of twitter activity still takes place in the US and UK, and focuses on research from those countries. She summarized by highlighting that we need to be careful to bear these differences in mid when considering what constitutes ‘high’ vs. ‘low’ amounts of attention, and questioned whether we are in danger of creating an ‘altmetrics divide’.

Fereshteh Didegah then shared some really interesting results from a study which looked at the quality of interactions and engagement around research articles on Twitter. Using 250 articles and their 8,000 associated Tweets, Fereshteh and her team classified engagement into 3 categories: dissemination, consultation and evaluation.

 

The research team also explored issues of false popularity, including harassment and clone accounts, in detail – trying to understand some of the causes behind them and the resulting effect. Overall, the research found that there are a broad array of people involved in discussions about science on Twitter – and that the majority of it focuses on simply sharing rather than adding any meaningful commentary.

‘Making piracy fun’ became the (perhaps unintended) tag-line of the next talk, where Tim Bowman discussed the results that came from analyzing the use of the #icanhazpdf hashtag. The study aimed to understand what percentage of tweets were requesting documents that were behind a paywall, and what other conversations were taking place around that. By pulling in and matching data from a variety of sources, Tim was able to identify some interesting interactions – including a relatively substantial number of people requesting papers that were in fact already open access. Further digging into the data revealed people using the hashtag to advertise their access to full text content as a service to others, and many librarians seeking to find alternative ways to deliver to the needs of the researchers. Use of the hasthag has become so widespread, Tim noted, that social ‘norms’ have emerged – such as deleting the request Tweet as soon as the paper had been received. These norms provide a ‘frame’ for people to normalize their subversive sharing activity.

Last up was Rodrigo Costas, who has been doing some really exciting work to improve the way we identify scholars on Twitter. Rodrigo matched article records from Web of Science with attention data from Altmetric to identify researcher Twitter accounts (pointing out the limitations of this along the way – there are many researchers on Twitter who have never shared a paper and therefore do not appear in the Altmetric database) and then cross-referencing those accounts with ORCID records to validate the identify of each Tweeter. Rodrigo found over 387,000 scholars with a Twitter account, and was confident of a 94% accuracy amongst those based on the ORCID validation. What makes this research so exciting, Rodrigo posed, is not necessarily what has been done so far but the potential to expand from here: if we are able to better identify researchers in social spaces then we can start to look in more depth at not just how they share papers, but how they communicate and engage on social networks in general, and what that might mean for their field.

This was a brilliant session brimming with insights and ideas for further investigation – do get in touch with the authors if you have more to discuss (via Twitter, of course ;))

Who Sets the Agenda in the Internet Age?

Agenda

Agenda

Fragmentation: Multiple channels and sources allow individuals to create their own, personalised agenda.

Media agenda-setting theory assumes the public receive news from a limited set of sources and that this encourages a shared agenda. In the digital age, however, there are now multiple channels and sources, allowing individuals to construct their own, personalised agenda.

The growing number of information channels, each with fewer readers, is dividing audiences.

Increasing fragmentation has been compounded by the way individuals access news: as the number of news sources increases, audiences use technologies to filter and customise access to information, according to personal likes and interests.

So, who sets the agenda in the digital age? The audience or the media?

The audience….?

Just over 20 years ago, Nicholas Negroponte, MIT Media Lab founder, suggested the concept of ‘Daily Me’: a computer screen with news and a button that, like a volume control, would allow the user to increase or decrease personalisation. Other controls could include a slider that moves both literally and politically from left to right to modify stories about public affairs.

The same idea gives the critical tone to the recent Republic.com 2.0, a book in which Cass R. Sunstein assumes that technology has greatly increased people’s ability to ‘filter’ what they want to read, see and hear.

With the help of the internet, we are able to design our own newspapers and magazines. We can make our own schedule, featuring the movies, games, sports, shopping and news programmes of our choice. We mix and match. When the power to filter is unlimited, people can decide, in advance and with perfect precision, what they will and will not find.

Many examples demonstrate that the media market follows this direction.

Digital newspapers encourage levels of personalisation that result in the creation of the reader’s own, individualised version of the newspaper, with the promise that it will contain exactly what concerns him and exclude everything that does not.

Other applications enable sites to automatically display information which, based on observation of the user’s previous habits, seems to be the most relevant. The same logic goes through television recording devices or radio subscription systems in RSS – the idea of control and personalisation of the agenda.

… or the media?

Another line of understanding continues giving the mainstream media a determining power in setting the agenda. Some of the arguments supporting this interpretation start from one of the promoters of the classical hypothesis of agenda-setting. In 2005, at a time when the impact of the internet was beginning to be felt, Maxwell McCombs, of the University of Texas, made the implementation of the previous proposals depend on two conditions, yet to be empirically validated.

The first refers to the number of people who frequent sites searching for information. If the classic media agenda-setting function tends to be diluted as the audience begins to distribute attention through the vast array of subjects available on the internet, the question is whether an audience so wide and fragmented can be said to exist at all.

The second condition is perhaps more difficult to achieve: online information agendas would need to be quite different from each other, as opposed to the relatively redundant agendas of traditional media.

Studies comparing the audience of the most-read paper journals with the most-consulted information sites showed that attention on the Web is even more concentrated than in the printed world. They also showed that many online sources are subsidiaries of traditional media sources, resulting in redundancy between the agendas of the two environments.

The citizen’s agenda?

Let us consider social media. Through the involvement of a large number of users, it is possible to create an agenda of themes alternative to those selected by mainstream media editors. The agenda-setting role played by YouTube, Facebook and Twitter has often been described in recent years, especially after the protests following the Iranian elections in 2009, (also dubbed the Twitter Revolution). In most cases, those are stories first brought by new media, then contextualized and validated by mainstream media.

In any case, imposing the re-evaluation of the agenda-setting concept.

This re-evaluation needs to consider that the gatekeeping function is now largely shared with media users, who furthermore aggregate and curate the information they consume. In Jim Hall‘s expression, they construct their own informative “diet”.

The result of this process has (or rather shares) the risks associated with much of the communication through the new media. Ben Smith, the editor-in-chief of the digital news portal BuzzFeed, recently denounced our tendency to live in filter bubbles, especially through our activities on social media. Anyone who works with information, he says, has spent the past year observing how social media affect people’s opinions about the world, and how they can close this world to dissenting opinions.

The return to the necessary social glue

The past clearly reveals the damage caused by the old agenda-setting operators, relentless in refusing arguments they considered outside the mainstream or political consensus. It is possible today to notice how the absence of a minimum standard of discursive order hinders, in a different way, the inter-comprehension and the understanding of questions of common interest. Diversity and plurality are conditions for the proper functioning of the civic life. They were precisely two of the values socially institutionalised by journalism, which social media seems to be threatening.

A multiplicity of fragmented agendas will not result in a platform for political discussion.

Without common experiences and concerns, a heterogeneous society will have much more difficulty identifying and responding to social problems. As Sunstein points out, it is these shared experiences, including those made possible by the media, which provide the social glue. As a result, a communication system that radically reduces the number of such experiences will create the conditions for the emergence of all the problems that result from social fragmentation.

In recent times, we have heard a lot about them. At stake is the emergence of a virtual pseudo-community that replaces the real community. Whether such dangers will materialise will ultimately depend on the aspirations that, on democratic terms, organise our practices.

 

Pic credit: Evan, The Beginning, Flickr CC licence

The post Who Sets the Agenda in the Internet Age? appeared first on European Journalism Observatory – EJO.

Trying to write a killer headline for social? Here are some of the most (and least) effective phrases

Jostling for readers for your listicle on Facebook? Aim for the number “10” in your headline.

Trying to promote a story on Twitter? Emotion-based appeals popular on Facebook don’t translate to Twitter.

Findings from a BuzzSumo trigram analysis of 100 million headlines published between March and May of this year confirms a lot about the clickbait-y, competitive publishing environment of social media.

The analysis reveals nothing particularly surprising, for instance, about the headline phrases that generated the most likes, shares, and comments: “Will make you” was by far the most successful phrase, and emotion-based appeals like “melt your heart” and “make you cry” also do well. (Also, we reported that 10 was the most common number for a BuzzFeed list way back in 2013.)

Publishers beware though: Facebook says its algorithm is cracking down again on clickbait in its News Feed.

Phrases that performed poorly on Facebook? “Control of your,” “work for you,” or “on a budget”— which apparently works well on Pinterest. Phrases that performed well on Facebook don’t work as well in Twitter headlines, where phrases that emphasize immediacy and analysis do best — “what we know,” “things to know,” “this is what.”

On Facebook, it’s also important to hit just the right headline length. Super short or super long headlines don’t appear to be effective. Posts between 12 and 18 words — and between 80 to 95 characters — get the most shares on Facebook.

This particular study draws its insights from some of the most shared stories on Facebook and Twitter, which include articles from major publishers like HuffPost and BuzzFeed; it’ll release separate headlines analysis for sharing business-to-business stories later in the year. You can read the entire post here.

State of social platform use in Germany in 5 charts

Germany has had a more reserved relationship with social media than other countries like the U.S. and U.K. That’s largely because the deep-rooted mistrust around data privacy from the Stasi era remains, which has bred a reluctance to fully embrace social networks. But that’s changing. The millennial generation has an affinity for social networks, which is why platforms like Instagram are booming in Germany.

There’s still a ways to go, though. Over 85 percent of all adult Germans are online, but only half of those are on social — far fewer than other European countries, according to a recent study from German public television companies ARD and ZDF.

Here’s a look at social network usage patterns, based on multiple data sources:

Facebook reigns supreme
Facebook is by far the most used social network in Germany with 28 million users, according to the platform. Some have said Facebook’s overall growth has started diminishing, though, as younger users have flocked to its other apps, WhatsApp and Instagram. Instagram has 9 million active users, according to the company. Instagram also released a load of business tools last year for brands, which has helped aid its growth among marketers. 

Agencies love Instagram
Facebook-owned Instagram will be Snapchat’s toughest rival, having launched in Germany earlier and already a favorite among agencies. Instagram is strong in the 14- to 29-year-old bracket but isn’t used much by older demographics. Usage of the platform is lagging behind awareness of it. Thirty-five percent of its 14- to 29-year-old users are active on Instagram, while awareness of it is at 56 percent within the same age group, according to research agency Forsa.

Source: Forsa

Snapchat lenses and stories are liked
It’s early for Snapchat in Germany, and the platform doesn’t separate German users officially yet, though some research firms put its usage numbers in the country at around 900,000 in 2016. Women make up 70 percent of the platform’s users, according to eMarketer data. Predictably, Snapchat Germany users are mostly in the 14- to 19-year-old age group, with 66 percent of users within that bracket, while 29 percent are between 20 and 29 years old, according to eMarketer. A smaller number of users — 2.5 percent — are over 30 years old, and the same percentage applies to those younger than 14 years old.

Snapchat features are getting more popular, though, particularly lenses and stories, according to a study by the University of Applied Sciences in Düsseldorf. A total 2,165 people were interviewed in January, 1,610 of whom use Snapchat.

Source: University of Applied Sciences in Düsseldorf

Twitter has always struggled
Twitter has never gotten great traction in Germany. “It just didn’t catch on,” said Irene Waltz, social media specialist at research firm Marketing Helfer. That’s not to say it isn’t used. Twitter is a useful tool for journalists, who use it a lot, as do football clubs. But it hasn’t been a tool for politicians’ campaigns, unlike in the U.S. and in the U.K., where it has played a major role, she added.

Twitter’s former 140-character limit was a barrier for some. But its failure to communicate German user figures early enough with agencies also hurt its growth. Twitter didn’t perform well for brands that launched accounts, either, according to Max Embert, social media specialist at Publicis Pixelpark. “Then, Instagram rose, and the focus shifted from the low engagement on Twitter to the highly engaging visual photo community,” he said. “Twitter didn’t understand the German market and was then overtaken by Instagram.”

Meanwhile, YouTube continues to perform well, commanding the highest media budgets along with Facebook. “YouTube is often separated from social media budgets and counted toward online video budgets or display advertising. So the most spend will be on Facebook and YouTube, with Instagram next,” added Embert.

 

Source: eMarketer

LinkedIn is catching up fast to Xing
Homegrown site Xing.com has been the most popular professional network in Germany, with 10.5 million total users there and in German-speaking nations Switzerland and Austria. But LinkedIn has steadily gained ground, now claiming 9 million users across Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Agencies attribute that to people who have previously lived abroad in countries where LinkedIn is the dominant network bumping up the average. New features and tools have also helped. “Xing is very powerful still here,” said Simon Usifo, managing director of account management at Ogilvy & Mather Germany. “LinkedIn has typically been used by people who have studied abroad. Most on Xing haven’t needed to go beyond that.”

 

Sources: LinkedIn and Xing

 

The post State of social platform use in Germany in 5 charts appeared first on Digiday.

How we integrated off-platform at the Guardian

Publishing to a new different platform than your website is sometime necessary but could be scary. Discover how we adapted our editorial and analytics tools to better understand our audience and the potential of some of the new publishing platforms.

What is the next platform? Since news organisation have transformed to digital first, software does continue to eat the world meaning new technology platforms appears quickly trying to become the new mainstream medias.

Those platforms where users will read content, or be notified that a new content is available, are called “off-platform” in opposition to the news organisations own websites, referred as “on-platform”.

Continue reading…

Using Twitter as a data source: an overview of social media research tools (updated for 2017)

Following his initial post on this topic in 2015, Wasim Ahmed has updated and expanded his rundown of the tools available to social scientists looking to analyse social media data. A number of new applications have been released in the intervening period, with the increasing complexity of certain research questions also having prompted some tools to increase their data retrieval functionalities. Although platforms such as Facebook and WhatsApp have more active users, Twitter’s unique infrastructure and the near-total availability of its data have ensured its popularity among researchers remains high.

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