How it can help you do research
Talk structure & content
* A short introduction to the social web
* Simple generic points, widely applicable
* Mode & tool specific tips
- mostly on Blogging, Tweeting & GitHub
Disclaimers (many): This is a 30min talk. I can’t cover everything. What I’m going to say is based mostly upon just opinion.
You can see some of my slides again online at: http://www.slideshare.
Most of the ‘ideas’ in this talk are not original, nor mine. Propagate as you wish!
This is a standard open science slide I’ve adapted from Cameron Neylon.
Use it when giving talks to make your preferences known to your audience.
What is social media?
Interaction among people in which they
create, share, and/or exchange information
and ideas in virtual communities and
...exchange of user-generated content
* Blogging * Social Networking Sites
* Microblogging * Content Communities
Examples of the social web
Don’t worry about all the different networks/tools
These are just some of many
The focus of this talk
Tip #2: Always label/explain images if possible
Many web-users & academics are blind or visually-impaired
Twitter YouTube LinkedIn
Google+ WordPress GitHub
Choose the right tool for the job
Each social network/tool has its strengths and weaknesses:
Twitter is great for quick real-time discussion & sharing links
- but it’s not a platform for detailed debate or lengthy code.
LinkedIn is good for reaching a more senior / higher-up
audience, and also job recruiters. Awful for discussion.
Youtube + Soundcloud are brilliant for second by second
analysis, discussion & sharing of audio/video, but little else.
Different people use things differently
Sounds simple, but it’s important to bear in mind.
1.) Personally, I use Facebook exclusively just for friends.
It’s a closed-ish private-space for me.
2.) But others happily use it as a public-facing profile to
interact with anyone and everyone.
3.) Others still maintain a separate ‘personal’ & ‘public’ fb
Be conscious that other people may do things differently...
Be nice. Be careful what you say
Social media has the power to immense good and bad
(Both for yourself and others)
RT’s != endorsement
Always remember your purpose
The social web, networks and tools are there to
help people interact and communicate
No one tweets for the sake of tweeting
Or blogs for the sake of blogging
Do it to communicate your work,
and raise your profile. Help and be helped.
Twitter is an invaluable tool for academics
When you can’t
access a paper
just tweet the
URL + #icanhazpdf + your email address
(someone kind will then email you the paper)
Delete your tweet after you receive what you need
It’s fantastic at meetings & conferences
Send tweets with the meeting hashtag e.g. #MastEcoBES13
so others can find/interact on the meeting ‘tweetstream’
Retweet (RT) things you agree with / or want others to read.
Add your own comment to a RT if there’s space.
My comment on this
Meetings & conferences
It enables useful and frank
discussion of talks
It empowers remote following
& remote participation.
Good panel sessions will take
questions from Twitter as well
as the in-house ‘live’ audience
of conference goers.
Getting help and helping others (mutual benefits!)
A recent example (26th Nov 2013)
I have 10,000+ DOI’s and I want to get BibTeX -> how?
Step 1.) Ask Q on twitter
Step 2.) Read near-instant replies from clever people
Take a bow @neilfws @invisiblecomma @egonwillighagen
Step 3.) Try suggested solutions… Encounter extra problem...
Tweet the new problem
(special characters in the DOI were
screwing-up my curl request)
Important sidenote: Twitter fosters brilliant cross-disciplinary communication.
Dan is a QMUL postdoc at the Centre for Digital Music. w/o Twitter this interaction would NEVER happen
More than just solving my problem though…
Helping me do that curl
request had mutual benefit
for Dan -> awareness
of an automated method
to get bibdata given DOI’s
...and also two of
Twitter is simply brilliant.
I won’t force you to join-up…
but if you don’t, I think you’re missing out
Twitter is limited to just <140 character messages.
For extended discussion, incorporating multiple media,
the blog post is a much better form and longer lasting
You can embed code, audio, video, pictures, GIF’s…
Try and always include at least 1 picture to break-up your text
Wordpress, Blogger or Tumblr are good platforms to start with
Blog posts can be and *are* cited in the literature.
It’s an excellent space to rapidly communicate new ideas.
(Incidentally, Rod Page first dragged me on to Twitter - thanks Rod!)
Blog posts on popular platforms can receive more attention
than your average Nature News article
Easy steps towards open scholarship Patients leave a microbial mark on hospitals
(LSE Impact of Social Sciences blog) (Nature News, 23 May 2013)
published 24 May 2013
Google+ & YouTube
Google+ has a lot of critics… “ghost town” etc
But I’ve got 15,000+ followers (circlers) there, so I like it :)
It’s great for paper discussions
Also for journal clubs via Google+ Hangouts
Hangouts can be recorded and automatically made available at
YouTube after the event
See here for a 14 comment thread! https://plus.google.com/+RossMounce/posts/BfeU1Tt8oGU
e.g. The Phylo / Macro Journal Club http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dmf7eKk23Gc
A horribly creepy network
- be careful what permissions you grant LinkedIn
I suspect it’s one of the few online networks
that more ‘senior’ academics use - so you need a presence here
It’s also really important for keeping connections and
job prospects for beyond academia
Make sure you upload your CV here
Social coding has arrived! Try it!
Why use Git? ->
Pearse & Purvis. 2013. phyloGenerator: an automated
phylogeny generation tool for ecologists. MEE
Code openly available on GitHub both pre- and post-publication
Enables ‘pull requests’ (suggest code changes) ‘forking’ and ‘issue tracking’
But see: The Economist article ‘No Peeking’ Jan 11th 2014
Used to be cool, but then Elsevier bought it out :(
Prompted many users to delete their data and walk away
See Jason Hoyt’s excellent blog post for more:
Also see http://thecostofknowledge.com/ for why
>14,500 academics are boycotting Elsevier
Tweet me (@rmounce) a link to *your* online presence
(don’t forget the conference hashtag: #PGConf14 )
If you’re not on Twitter, why not sign-up now ?
Anything you’d like to know about that I haven’t addressed?