Post written by Zachary L. Smith, DO, from the Division of Gastroenterology and Liver Disease, University Hospitals & Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, Ohio, USA.
The focus of our study was to evaluate the association between social media exposure and citations for articles published in the journal Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.
The use of various social media outlets to discuss and promote medical literature has increased over the last decade. With regard to GIE, the journal has made significant efforts to promote published articles across various platforms including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, as well as its own blog Endoscopedia. The number of physicians and clinical scientists who are discussing these articles on social media has also increased over time. In addition to traditional article citations, various third-party organizations have started measuring “alternative metrics” for journal articles to help measure an article’s reach. We wanted to assess whether there was an association between article citations and higher social media exposure for articles published in GIE over time.
We found that social media exposure was associated with higher citations of journal articles over time. The strongest association was observed in articles that were discussed and mentioned on Twitter. Due to the retrospective nature, it was impossible to assess causality, and therefore it remains questionable whether this represents a cause and effect, or simply the fact that more interesting and higher impact articles would be discussed on social media more commonly. A randomized-controlled trial assessing various social media exposure strategies would be necessary to further delineate these results and assess for a cause and effect relationship.
Read the full article online.
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