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and expertise 
in social media

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Several statistics show that the general public holds a wide interest on scientific issues. However, the public rarely finds their way to academic arenas. It has been estimated that every year over two million scientific articles and reports are published, but roughly half of them are read only by the author and the editors.

Public discussions are increasingly taking place in social media. Different online media are reported as central information sources when searching for scientific information. What can we do as researchers to help people to find the information they look for? How to make a researcher's voice heard online?

Communicating about one's research in social media means creating societal impact and defending a scientific worldview. In this workshop we will focus on practical tips and good examples on how to engage in different social media services as a researcher.

Salla-Maaria Laaksonen (@jahapaula) is a PhD Candidate and Researcher in Communication Research Centre CRC and Consumer Society Research Centre in the University of Helsinki. Her research areas are focused on the online public sphere from the perspective of organizations and storytelling. She has trained researchers to communicate and network online in several different research units.

brown bag session for Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies, Novermber 17th 2015.

Veröffentlicht in: Soziale Medien
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and expertise 
in social media

  1. 1. 
 and expertise 
 in social media
 Brown bag session for Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies" 17.11.2015! ! ! Salla-Maaria Laaksonen, Ms. Soc. Sc! salla.laaksonen at helsinki.fi
 @jahapaula 1 Picture via Amazon & Pinterest
  2. 2. Agenda ! • The big picture of science communication! ! • The role of social media for researchers • How can different social media services be used to disseminate research knowledge and expertise?! • How to create societal impact through social media?
  3. 3. 3 The World Bank recently decided to ask an important question: Is anyone actually reading these things? They dug into their Web site traffic data and came to the following conclusions: Nearly one-third of their PDF reports had never been downloaded, not even once. Another 40 percent of their reports had been downloaded fewer than 100 times. Only 13 percent had seen more than 250 downloads in their lifetimes. Since most World Bank reports have a stated objective of informing public debate or government policy, this seems like a pretty lousy track record. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2014/05/08/the-solutions-to-all-our-problems-may-be-buried-in-pdfs-that-nobody-reads/
  4. 4. 4http://www.tieteentiedotus.fi/files/Sciencebarometer_2013_netsummary.pdf a
  5. 5. 90%" 72% 51%" 69%" 47% ”Not enough science” ”Researchers should listen to laymen” ”Universities are too separate of other society and everyday life” ”Trusts universities 
 and university researchers” Britain Public Attitudes to Science 2014 / Finnish Science Barometer 2013! http://www.tieteentiedotus.fi/files/Tiedebarometri_2013_net.pdf http://www.ipsos-mori.com/researchpublications/researcharchive/ 3357/Public-Attitudes-to-Science-2014.aspx#gallery[m]/0/
  6. 6. http://qz.com/269227/brace-yourself-for-the-corporate-journalism-wave/
  7. 7. Three good reasons to 
 communicate about your research 1. The third mission of the university: societal impact 2.Own expert brand – within the scientific community and outside 3.Defending the scientific worldview and general trust in science
  8. 8. Social media for researchers 86 % of Finns aged 16–89 are online ! 64 % uses Internet several times a day
  9. 9. Genres of social media 16.9.2014 10 1. Collaborative productions (wiki, e.g. Wikipedia) 2. Social networks (e.g. Facebook, LinkedIn, Academia.edu…) 3. Content sharing (e.g. YouTube, Flickr, Instagram, SlideShare) 4. Blogs and microblogs (blogging platforms, Twitter) 5. Virtual worlds (social interaction and play, e.g. Second Life, World of Warcraft) 6. Internet forums (e.g. Usenet, Reddit, Suomi24, MuroBBS…) 
 (Laaksonen et al. 2013; based on Kaplan & Haenlein 2010; 
 Lietsala & Sirkkunen 2008, Luoma-aho 2010)
  10. 10. In addition… • Add-ons: features of a site that can be used in a another service (e.g. Google Maps, FB Connect) • Aggregators: feed services that bring together different elements and platforms (Friendfeed, Flipboard, phone apps) • Live audiences: commenting and participating in a event or media show virtually in real time (social TV platforms, live-blogging, live-tweeting) (Lietsala & Sirkkunen 2008; Luoma-Aho 2010) 11
  11. 11. (Nature, 2014) • Over 50% of researchers use social networking services (e.g., Google Scholar, ResearchGate, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook). Most commonly they: ▪ have a profiles in ResearchGate or Mendeley ▪ post research material online (also Massoli, 2007; Trench, 2012) ▪ monitor issues related to their own area ▪ network and collaborate inside the academic community (also Ciber, University College London & Emerald Group Publishing Ltd 2010; Eperen & Marincola 2011). • Only 15 % regard ResearchGate as interactive, but over 50% of Twitter users consider it as a good arena for research-related discussions Researchers’ use of social media?
  12. 12. (Nature, 2014) LinkedIn Most popular professional networking service both globally and in Finland. Works as an online CV and network-building tool. Also some practices of sharing content and having peer discussions in groups. Recently added an option to list one’s own publications.! 
 Users: over 400 milion, In FInland circa 782 000 (somehow.fi) An arena to be listed on, just in case!
  13. 13. Networking services for researchers Academia.edu Researchgate.net 16
  14. 14. (Nature, 2014) Facebook Most popular social networking service in the world and in Finland. Well suited for all kinds of content sharing and founding groups. A great deal of the interaction takes place in closed profiles, but for public communication pages and groups are a good option. Pages are good for regular updates and promoting, groups for conversation. 
 Users: 1.39 billion active, Finland 2,4 million (est.) (56%) Most researchers do not use professio- nally! But if they do, they post content.
  15. 15. Twitter Currently the second most popular social networking service in the world. Also called a microblog; tweets are small updates of 140 characters. Thus, to use Twitter well one needs to learn how to be concise. Twitter is often used to share links to content elsewhere in the web – it works well as a light marketing channel. Also used as a backchannel for events and conferences. ! Users: 288 million monthly active. Finland around 355 000 (10%). Following, posting, sharing, discussing, connecting… Twitter is used actively to participate (Nature, 2014)
  16. 16. Spread the word! • LinkedIn, Academia.edu and ResearchGate to transfer your networks to digital and to follow your peers • Twitter and Facebook to disseminate links to your research and all other writings and presentations, as well as other interesting content • If you have longer points to make, use a blog to argument your point in a popular style and to comment on timely issues • Use paper repositories and SlideShare to publish your materials 17
  17. 17. #hashtag denotes conversation and communities across services 18
  18. 18. “Social media” are really just technologies that facilitate conversations. 
 (Carton S. 2009) Kuva: Free-Photo-Gallery.org
  19. 19. But why and how to build expertise and network in social media?
  20. 20. #discoverability
  21. 21. http://blog.lindau-nobel.org/the-verdict-is-blogging-or-tweeting-about-research-papers-worth-it/ #impact • Visibility in social media (e.g. tweeting, blogging) can bring more views to a research articles (Terras,2012): • Articles of a control group were available through University College London open access database and were downloaded 1–2 times on average. • Articles shared in social media were downloaded approximately 70 times during the day tweeted. 20
  22. 22. 23 (Poutanen & Laaksonen, 2015b)
  23. 23. 24 Expert on duty, online police of a topic A researcher expert brand
  24. 24. 30 A simple contentstrategy fora musician Optimize the timing with the 10-20 rule: – Young 9-10pm – Office workers weekdays 10-11am – (Kortesuo, 2010, 42-43; Parviainen & Lähdevuori, 2012)
  25. 25. Listen, learn, discuss, share! 12 • Figure out what is the core knowledge you have and you want to be known for – focus and concentrate. • Find the people who are interested in this area and the places where they already are online – listen, learn, and benchmark. • Connect with those people and start producing content – comment, join conversations, share links. • Formulate your own motives and goals – don’t communicate just for communication, but for concrete results and reasons. • SNS’s are people centric - but the same list applies also for research teams and projects.
  26. 26. ! If (social media interaction is often) then (Open access + social media = increased downloads …and reach). ! ! (Terras 2014) 27
  27. 27. EXERCISE: 
 Crafting a research tweet ”You have 140 characters to tell what was the point in your most recent research article.” ! Write a tweet of 140 characters to summarize your latest paper. How to convince a normal citizen to check it out? What hashtags could you use? https://storify.com/chronicle/test
  28. 28. Twitter • A good twitter update: – Timely – Very short – Contains information or an argument – Contains a links (shortened) – Takes part in conversations with a #hashtag • Karma of reciprocity!
  29. 29. References and materials • Kortesuo, Katarina (2010). Sano se someksi. Infor, helsinki.! • Kouper, Inna (2010) Science blogs and public engagement with science: Practices, challenges, and opportunities. Journal of Science Communication, 9(1), 1-10. http://jcom.sissa.it/archive/09/01/Jcom0901%282010%29A02/Jcom0901%282010%29A02.pdf! • Laaksonen, S. M., Matikainen, J., & Tikka, M. (2013). Tutkimusotteita verkosta. Teoksessa Laaksonen, Salla-Maaria & Matikainen, Janne & Tikka, Minttu (toim.): Otteita verkosta. Verkon ja sosiaalisen median tutkimusmenetelmät. Vastapaino. Tampere, 9-33.! • Lietsala, K. & Sirkkunen, E. (2008) Social media. Introduction to the tools and processes of participatory economy. Hypermedialaboratorion verkkojulkaisuja - Hypermedia Laboratory Net Series, 17. Tampere University Press.! • Luoma-aho, B. V. (2010). Is social media killing our theories? Viestinnän tutkimuksen päivät 2010.! • Nature (2014) Online collaboration: Scientists and the social network. Richard Van Noorden. 13 August 2014. http:// www.nature.com/news/online-collaboration-scientists-and-the-social-network-1.15711?WT.mc_id=TWT_NatureNews! • Parviainen, Olli & Lähdevuori, Jari (2012). Suomalaisten Facebook-sivujen tila. Tutkimus markkinoinnista ja viestinnästä Facebookissa. http://www.divia.fi/divia/sites/default/files/Suomalaisten_Facebook-sivujen_tila_2012.pdf ! • Poutanen, P. & Laaksonen, S-M. (2015): “Miksi vaivautua?” Tutkimusmaailman trendit haastavat tutkijat viestimään työstään: http:// blogs.helsinki.fi/tiedeviestinta/2015/05/06/miksi-vaivautua-tutkimusmaailman-trendit-haastavat-tutkijat-viestimaan-tyostaan/! • Poutanen, P. & Laaksonen, S-M. (2015). Tiede sosiaalisessa mediassa -harjoituskurssi. University of Helsinki, course in science communication, autumns 2014/2015.! • Pew Research Center (2014) Social Media and the ‘Spiral of Silence’. http://www.pewinternet.org/2014/08/26/social-media-and- the-spiral-of-silence/! • Public Attitudes to Science (2014) http://www.theguardian.com/science/political-science/2014/mar/14/how-to-read-the-latest-data- on-public-attitudes-to-science! • Saikkonen, Sampsa & Väliverronen, Esa (2013) Popularisoinnista osallistavaan tiedeviestintään. Kriittinen arvio ”demokraattisesta” käänteestä. Yhteiskuntapolitiikka, 78(4), 16-424. http://www.julkari.fi/handle/10024/110430! • Tiedebarometri (2013) http://www.tieteentiedotus.fi/files/Tiedebarometri_2013_net.pdf // http://www.tieteentiedotus.fi/files/ Sciencebarometer_2013_netsummary.pdf ! • Väliverronen, Esa (2014) Sosiaalinen kupla kaventaa mediamaisemaa. http://medykblog.wordpress.com/2014/08/21/sosiaalinen- kupla-kaventaa-mediamaisemaa/! • Waldrop M. Mitchell (2008). Science 2.0: Great New Tool, or Great Risk? Scientific American, 298(5), 68-73. http:// www.scientificamerican.com/article/science-2-point-0-great-new-tool-or-great-risk/! • Wilcox, Christie (2012) It's Time To e-Volve: Taking Responsibility for Science Communication in a Digital Age. Biological Bulletin. 222(2), 85-87. http://www.biolbull.org/content/222/2/85.full