July 03, 2012

Mendeley's number of readers

Follow-up to Webometrics and altmetrics: digital world measurements from Library Research Support

I once blogged about Altmetrics and the tool Total Impact, which seemed to use the Mendeley API for tracking papers’ popularity.

I had another look at Total Impact lately and it has been worked on: I can’t give it my Mendeley profile any more, and in fact it didn’t do anything at all for me, but it is in beta and so I sent them some feedback explaining that I got nowhere with the tool, and we shall see.

So, I went directly to Mendeley, and you can see how many “readers” there are for a paper in the results of a search there, but that information is not displayed with the paper’s information once you have added it to your own library or to your list of “my publications” for display on your profile. I was disappointed that apparently only one of my papers is “open access” according to Mendeley’s search filter, even though they are in WRAP and so they are open access... I'm not sure what Mendeley's criteria is for a paper being "open access" according to its search filter.

From what I can tell in the FAQs on the Mendeley site, number of “readers” in Mendeley is the number of distinct users who have added the paper to their Library on Mendeley. It doesn’t actually mean that they’ve read the paper: I added a handful of papers that look interesting to my own Library that I have never read. It’s more of a wish list!

And then I played around with Google some more, to see if there were other tools that were accessing Mendeley’s “reader” numbers API, and I came across Readermeter which looks really interesting because you can give it the author’s name and get all sorts of stats back in a pretty format!


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