Researchers' tweets move science forward

Sep 10, 2013
This infographic illustrates the impact of social media, specifically Twitter, on scientific research. Credit: Catherine Pratt

Social media is changing the way that scientists are interacting with each other and with the global community. One example is the way that researchers use Twitter to increase the impact of their research. David Shiffman, a Ph.D. student at the University of Miami's Abess Center for Ecosystem Science and Policy, describes the advantages of tweeting during the development of scientific publications.

Incorporating Twitter into the different stages of a scientific publication allows scientists to connect more quickly, facilitates interdisciplinary collaboration and makes it possible to communicate results to a large and diverse audience, according to Shiffman. It also encourages post-publication conversations about the findings.

"Social media, which allows information to be shared instantly around the world, gives internet-savvy scientists the ability to drastically accelerate the pace of scientific communication and collaboration," says Shiffman, who was recently named one of the top biologists to follow on Twitter (@WhySharksMatter) by the Huffington Post.

Although some scientists have mixed feelings about using Twitter for scholarly purposes, it's only a matter of time before the scientific community embraces social media, says another author of the study, Emily Darling, a Smith Conservation Research Fellow at the University of North Carolina.

"Many scientists may think they don't have time for Twitter," says Darling, "But a little effort can provide enormous value for communication and outreach. The solution is to just give it a try."

Shiffman and his collaborators document examples that support the scientific and scholarly use of tweeting, in a study titled "The role of Twitter in the life cycle of a scientific publication," published in the journal Ideas in Ecology and Evolution.

Explore further: Twitter dials deeper into TV

More information: library.queensu.ca/ojs/index.p… EE/article/view/4625

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Twitter dials deeper into TV

Aug 28, 2013

A start-up specializing in tuning into online banter by TV viewers said Wednesday that it has been bought by Twitter.

Tweeting our way to heart health

Apr 16, 2013

(Medical Xpress)—Real-time social phenomenon, Twitter, can be a powerful tool to help prevent heart disease and improve health practices, according to a group of researchers affiliated with the University ...

Recommended for you

Google made failed bid for Spotify

10 hours ago

Internet titan Google tried last year to buy streaming music service Spotify but backed off for reasons including a whopping price tag, the Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday.

Thieves got into 1,000 StubHub accounts

11 hours ago

(AP)—Cyber thieves got into more than 1,000 StubHub customers' accounts and fraudulently bought tickets for events through the online ticket reseller, a law enforcement official and the company said.

Putin signs law seen as crimping social media

22 hours ago

President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday signed a law requiring Internet companies to store all personal data of Russian users at data centres in Russia, a move which could chill criticism on foreign social networking ...

User comments : 0