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How and why scholars cite on Twitter

Jason Priem and Kaitlin Light Costello

(Submission #201)


Scholars are increasingly using the microblogging service Twitter as a communication platform. Since citing is a central practice of scholarship, we wondered whether scholars cite on Twitter; and, if so, how and why they cite. To investigate these questions, we conducted interviews and harvested 46,515 tweets from a snowball sample of 28 scholars. We found that scholars do cite on Twitter, though often indirectly. These citations are part of a conversation which moves faster than traditional citations but still reflects scholarly impact. Our findings suggest that Twitter could be a useful source for bibliometricians and others interested in scholarly communication.


Program Track:  Track 5 - Information Use
Submission Type:  Short Paper

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