Methods has just started a 6 month trial with Altmetric.
Altmetric is a powerful tool that tracks when an article has been mentioned online on websites such as Twitter, Facebook, Google+, blog sites, news sites, Mendeley, CiteULike, and many more. When calculating an article’s score, Altmetric takes into account factors such as the number of people who have mentioned it online, the type of people who have mentioned it (i.e. scientists or members of the public), and also on which sites the mentions were posted.

The following symbol is located next to each Methods article on Wiley Online Library (in this example the article’s Altmetric score is currently 32):Altmetric synbolYou can click on the symbol to find out more information about the attention that the article has received online, for example how many times it has been tweeted about, or who has mentioned it on their blog site. You can also view an explanation of how the score was calculated, a comparison with other article’s scores, and a breakdown of the demographics:

altmetric pageWith the increasing use of social media for the dissemination of research, the Altmetric score aims to measure the online reach of individual articles. In comparison to traditional metrics such as the impact factor, which is more of a long-term reflection of a collection of articles (the journal), the Altmetric score is an immediate reflection of an individual article. It’s expected to be especially useful when used in conjunction with other metrics, such as the impact factor of the journal and the number of citations gained, to help create a more complete picture of an article’s impact.

Methods Senior Editor, Bob O’Hara, comments “I’m really excited by this Altmetric trial. Not just because Altmetric provides a whole new set of statistics I can use to boost my ego, but also because I think we have to be aware of the wider impact of our science, beyond simple citations. Reporting a variety of metrics will be a step towards this, and I hope this trial will help people to see how else a paper can influence the scientific and wider community“.