Altmetric Prevalence in the Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities: Where are the Online Discussions?

Mike Thelwall
2018 Journal of Altmetrics  
The social sciences, arts and humanities all address issues of general interest that may generate broad societal impacts and public discussion. Although prior research suggests that this potential is not captured by altmetrics, it is not known whether this is true for all fields. In response, this article compares 35 social sciences, arts and humanities fields for 10 Altmetric.com scores (blogs, news, Twitter, Reddit, Facebook, Pinterest, Wikipedia, reviews, questions, Google Plus) for articles
more » ... Plus) for articles published in 2013. Excluding Twitter (maximum 41%), no field had more than 12% of its articles registering a non-zero score on any altmetric five years after publication. In some cases, fields with relatively high levels of attention were due to self-publicity or the activities of individuals rather than public discussion. There were substantial differences between fields, with Classics and Literature & Literary Theory being almost ignored and Archeology generating a relatively high level of attention on Facebook. Although journal articles are not central to many social sciences, arts and humanities fields, the apparently universally low levels of discussion about them online is surprising given their potential audience.
doi:10.29024/joa.6 fatcat:xi5gctuea5bwlhkefpcydgradu