The rank of a journal based on simple citation information is a popular measure. The simplicity and availability of rankings such as Impact Factor, Eigenfactor and SciMago Journal Rank based on trusted commercial sources ensures their widespread use for many important tasks despite the well-known limitations of such rankings. In this paper we look at an alternative approach based on information on papers from social and mainstream media sources. Our data comes from altmetric.com who identify mentions of individual academic papers in sources such as Twitter, Facebook, blogs and news outlets. We consider several different methods to produce a ranking of journals from such data. We show that most (but not all) schemes produce results, which are roughly similar, suggesting that there is a basic consistency between social media based approaches and traditional citation based methods. Most ranking schemes applied to one data set produce relatively little variation and we suggest this provides a measure of the uncertainty in any journal rating. The differences we find between data sources also shows they are capturing different aspects of journal impact. We conclude a small number of such ratings will provide the best information on journal impact.
- Pub Date:
- July 2015
- Computer Science - Digital Libraries;
- Computer Science - Computers and Society;
- Computer Science - Social and Information Networks
- 6 pages. To appear in the proceedings of ISSI 2015, the 15th International Society of Scientometrics and Informetrics conference held in Istanbul on 30th June to 2nd July 2015