User generated content survey: lazyweb, please help!

Photo by RichardAM

Couple of updates: first, thanks for all your help, things have gone exceptionally well so far with ~ 8k decisions made yesterday. Second, just so nobody is misled this is an NPG web publishing department project that uses PLoS data (with their permission). The raw results and our analysis will be made freely available here.

Got a sec? If you can read and understand a scientific abstract then we need you to help make the publishing world more science 2.0 friendly. Thirty seconds, five minutes, half an hour – whatever you can spare would be great.

Please visit and categorize the comments left on papers in PLoS ONE up to Aug ’08.

PLoS ONE were one of the first journals to allow online commenting and (I think) the first to allow blog trackbacks and inline annotations. Last year PLoS’s community manager Bora kindly put together some spreadsheets to let people see the stats behind this reader generated content. Deepak Singh (quick plug: check out Deepak and Hari Jayaram’s Coast to Coast podcast if you haven’t already) and Cameron Neylon checked out the numbers.

I agree with Deepak’s assessment:

Is the commenting on PLoS One at a level that we hoped it would be? Not quite. Is it as bad as some might like to believe? Not quite.

… in the best possible way. Considering how alien the concept of commenting on a paper online is to most scientists PLoS should be pleased with their efforts.

By categorizing comments we should be able to better understand what kind of comments get left and responded to and hopefully we can get a better idea of how they should be encouraged and presented. I’ll make the results publicly available once they’ve all been processed.

Thanks in advance – and have fun!

Well, maybe not fun. It’s actually quite hard work which is why I’m hoping the blogosphere will help out. I promise that we’ll use the results for good.


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