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Article Metrics

Academic urban legends

Overview of attention for article published in Social Studies of Science, June 2014
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 5% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • One of the highest-scoring outputs from this source (#1 of 845)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (99th percentile)
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (99th percentile)

Citations

dimensions_citation
36 Dimensions

Readers on

mendeley
379 Mendeley
citeulike
21 CiteULike
Title
Academic urban legends
Published in
Social Studies of Science, June 2014
DOI 10.1177/0306312714535679
Pubmed ID
Authors

Ole Bjørn Rekdal

Abstract

Many of the messages presented in respectable scientific publications are, in fact, based on various forms of rumors. Some of these rumors appear so frequently, and in such complex, colorful, and entertaining ways that we can think of them as academic urban legends. The explanation for this phenomenon is usually that authors have lazily, sloppily, or fraudulently employed sources, and peer reviewers and editors have not discovered these weaknesses in the manuscripts during evaluation. To illustrate this phenomenon, I draw upon a remarkable case in which a decimal point error appears to have misled millions into believing that spinach is a good nutritional source of iron. Through this example, I demonstrate how an academic urban legend can be conceived and born, and can continue to grow and reproduce within academia and beyond.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 2,829 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 379 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
United States 10 3%
Sweden 3 <1%
France 2 <1%
Netherlands 2 <1%
New Zealand 2 <1%
Canada 2 <1%
United Kingdom 2 <1%
Germany 2 <1%
Brazil 2 <1%
Other 10 3%
Unknown 342 90%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Ph. D. Student 95 25%
Researcher 63 17%
Student > Master 43 11%
Other 27 7%
Student > Bachelor 23 6%
Other 88 23%
Unknown 40 11%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Social Sciences 92 24%
Psychology 41 11%
Agricultural and Biological Sciences 36 9%
Computer Science 31 8%
Medicine and Dentistry 15 4%
Other 117 31%
Unknown 47 12%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 2059. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 01 September 2021.
All research outputs
#2,567
of 18,934,527 outputs
Outputs from Social Studies of Science
#1
of 845 outputs
Outputs of similar age
#12
of 200,707 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Social Studies of Science
#1
of 9 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 18,934,527 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 99th percentile: it's in the top 5% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 845 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 15.1. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 200,707 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done particularly well, scoring higher than 99% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 9 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has scored higher than all of them