I have had a flickr account for years, but had pretty much stopped using it a couple of years ago (in fact there used to be a widget on the side of the blog that I’ve removed). But now they’ve revamped it, extended storage and removed the limit on the number of sets you can have as a free member I’m playing around with it again. For sharing photos with people it is very easy, and with the controls on who can see them does allow you to limit who can see the pictures. It can also be used to share photos with people who aren’t using the site (which is more tricky to do with Facebook). And I do like the new look photo display, although I know many people have said how difficult it is on mobiles.
I probably am far too conscious of what’s available online with my little boy – I’m trying to give him the control of his digital identity, or at least the ability to control it when he’s bigger. And so I’m trying not to have too much stuff out there about him, especially photos, that he won’t have control over. Cautiousness with the internet is probably a good thing, as once it’s online it’s there forever! Although I am aware there is a tension between that and letting family and friends see how he’s getting on when they can’t see him all the time.
Anyway, we shall see how long I keep using Flickr for this time at least it’s spreading out what I do online between different companies and not concentrating all my data with one!
Reading the tweets from UKSG over the last few days has reminded me of an issue I keep mulling over to do with altmetrics – the fact that there are multiple copies of the same article in existence, and how can you tie up the social media impact of all of them?
For example there could be:
- the published version on the publisher’s website
- various subscription only aggregators version of the article (probably metadata only)
- a copy of the post-print in an institutional or subject repository
All of these can be linked as they should have the DOI (assuming they all use the same DOI, which is another question altogether), but what about when someone links to information about the article that isn’t the article itself. For example I noticed on Facebook the other day that someone I’m friends with had had an article published in Nature and they shared the link to their University’s press release about the publication. Looking at the press release it had got quite a few shares on Twitter, Facebook etc. My first thought was that that was a shame as it didn’t contribute to the article’s altmetrics, whereas linking to the article would have done.
Adding in some other possibile ways of working you can easily come up with the following situations:
- someone who shares the link to a press release about the article, rather than the article itself
- someone who puts a blog post up about their article and then shares the link to the blog post, rather than the article itself
- sharing the links to any news items about the article
Surely links to these types of information about a published article is as important/interesting as sharing the article itself? ANd also adds to the impact that any article has had in social media, so is there any way to include these sorts of mentions, although I appreciate that it’s probably an impossible task!
(for tweets from UKSG on the altmetrics sessions see Brian Kelly’s Storify)
One of the things that I struggle with is how to show the value of things – what impact has doing a particular activity had?
Tying this into altmetrics and the need within the REF to demonstrate the impact of research outside academia, the same questions arise. So what if an article has been tweeted however many times? That’s interesting to know and shows a certain level of engagement with a group of people, but in order to show impact you need to take it one step further – have those people (or their readers) done anything as a result of it? How has it changed the way they look at the world/live their lives/etc? For most academic research this is very difficult as it’s not always directly relevant to real life, and how would you measure statistics about it anyway? So a zillion people have seen a YouTube clip you’ve put up about your research but what does that mean?
Whilst altmetrics are interesting in that they try to log some of this they’ve only got the first step. I’m not sure there are any answers here, but as impact is something that is more and more required by funders it’s going to become more imperative to find them!
So my little boy is settled in at nursery and we’re settled in to the routine of getting him there in the mornings and picking him up after work. One of the differences between nursery and being at home is that they organise events, events that require costumes. So far this year we’ve had:
- World Book Day – dress as a character from your favourite book (we did the baby from Peepo)
- Comic Relief – wear something red
And coming up next week is an Easter bonnet parade, so we will be making something this weekend for him to wear to that. I really enjoy dressing up and organising costumes, as long as I have enough notice to plan something. But I can see how some others don’t and find this sort of activity too forced. It is one way of celebrating different things and marking the changes in the season/calendar, but all too often they are a very Western European Christian calendar and other festivals or dates aren’t noticed. I guess there has to be a balance, otherwise you’ll be doing something special all the time and that stops being so special (and parents get increasingly fed up at having to find different costumes so frequently), but some inclusion of non-standard events would be something I’d welcome.
Anyway, I’m planning what I can make for him as an Easter bonnet that’s a) suitable for a boy and b) he will keep on for longer than the 2 secs he generally keeps a hat on for!
Last week I hosted a meeting of people interested in bibliometrics, primarily from UK University Libraries, although a few people came from further afield. There were 47 attendees, and we had a waiting list as the event was full within a week of asking people to register. Overall the feedback was very positive and a second event is in the planning, but things that I learnt/would do differently:
- Eduroam is great for UK attendees, but doesn’t work for international visitors so you need to do something to allow them access to wifi
- A number of people were interested to have a delegate list, which we hadn’t thought of doing
- Make sure there’s a separate room to eat lunch in
- Chairing the meeting and running round sorting out things is quite tiring!
Hopefully this is just the start and we can keep the momentum going and make this a regular thing and build a network of people doing similar things to help us support the research that’s being done in our institutions. This whole area is one where I sense there’s a growing interest across the sector and will become more important in the future.