Taylor & Francis recently published their annual Open Access Survey. This is a survey they conducted of the authors they published during 2012.
What interested us about the survey were the responses concerning usage statistics.
Sixty percent of the respondents said that usage and download statistics will become important for assessing the value of research over the next ten years. Only 12% said that they would not be important. While citations still rank (81%) as the most important way for assessing the value of research in the coming decade, it is clear that more and more authors are seeing the importance of the new ways people interact with and use research.
At PlumTM Analytics, we see this survey as validation of our view of altmetrics, or rather ALLmetrics since the definition of altmetrics does not include usage, nor do most altmetric providers.
When we developed PlumXTM there was growing attention to the role social media was playing in scholarly communications. We knew that Twitter, Facebook and others were becoming a big part of research promotion, and subsequently important to measure. But, we also knew that there were lots of other metrics that are important in understanding the impact of research. We set out to gather as many of those metrics as we could and categorize them in a meaningful way for clearer understanding. We wrote about this categorization in a previous blog.
One of those categories is Usage.
PlumX categorizes a lot of activity in Usage including, Downloads, Views, Holdings and Video Plays.
Recently, we added usage statistics from EBSCO Databases, eBooks and EBSCO Discovery Service. You can read about this in more detail on our blog. By including this amount of usage across publishers, PlumX gives you a good proxy of the usage of articles and other research output.
Plum Analytics also makes it easy to show usage to your authors in your open access repositories.
If you embed the PlumTM Print widget into your repository you can show your authors usage and other altmetric information. You can read more about the Plum Print in this blog post.
We can also include the usage statistics of the repository itself. That is exactly what some of our customers are doing. See this blog for more details and see this example below.
We are excited that we can help authors of Open Access articles assess the value of their research.