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Information Culture

Information Culture

Thoughts and analysis related to science information, data, publication and culture.
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  • Profile

    Bonnie J. M. Swoger is a Science and Technology Librarian at a small public undergraduate institution in upstate New York, SUNY Geneseo. She teaches students about the science literature, helps faculty and students with library research questions and leads library assessment efforts. Bonnie started her professional life as a geologist, but realized that she was much more interested in how scientists communicate their research to one another. As a librarian, she gets to teach others about the topic. She has a BS in Geology from St. Lawrence University, an MS in Geology from Kent State University and an MLS from the University at Buffalo. She lives in upstate New York with her husband, two young daughters and two old cats. She would love to have some free time in which to indulge in hobbies. She also blogs at the Undergraduate Science Librarian and can be found on twitter @bonnieswoger.

    Hadas Shema is an Information Science graduate student at Bar-Ilan University, Israel. She studies the characteristics of online scientific discourse and is a member of the European Union’s Academic Careers Understood through Measurement and Norms (ACUMEN) project. Hadas tweets at @Hadas_Shema. Follow on Twitter @infoculture2.
  • So long, Scientific American, and thanks for all the fish

    The new Information Culture site

    The editors at Scientific American have decided to go in another direction with their blog network. As a result, our Information Culture blog will no longer be hosted on this network. We will continue to blog about the scientific literature, data sharing and the culture of science communication at our new site, Those interested [...]

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    Is Nature’s “free to view” program a step back for open access?

    CC BY Image courtesy of Flickr user Steven Depolo

    News articles about scientific research often have misleading headlines meant to grab readers. News articles about scientific publishing are rarely subject to the same forces simply because relatively few people are interested. This morning, Nature News published one of the most misleading headlines ever: In fact, Nature did not make it’s articles free to view. [...]

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    Is this peer reviewed? Predatory journals and the transparency of peer review.

    IJACT's review process

    A few days ago, we learned that another spoof paper (PDF) had been accepted to an ostensibly peer reviewed journal. The paper was a simple repetition of the words “Get me off your f***ing mailing list” for 10 pages, complete with section headings and appropriate figures. The paper was accepted by the International Journal of Advanced [...]

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    Preserving scholarly information: LOCKSS, CLOCKKS, and portico

    While the switch from print to digital publishing has been embraced by younger researchers and students, older faculty are a little more nervous about the impact of this (nearly complete) transition. This is somewhat related to the loss of print copies to hold in their hands and read, but for many, there is a larger [...]

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    My personal information management strategies

    My notebook. I get a little fancy using a Notabilia notebook from Levenger because of the high quality paper.

    I have systems set up to help me keep track of most of my personal information (files, images, etc.). Sometimes, these systems break down, especially when I get busy or overwhelmed. I spent 30 minutes this morning searching for a picture of notes written on a white board in a meeting last Spring. The pile [...]

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    Should we put our money where our citations are?

    A while back I covered a study called “From funding agencies to scientific agency,” by researchers from Indiana University’s Department of Information and Library Science (Bollen, Crandall, Junk, Ding & Börner, 2014) which suggested an alternative for today’s method of allocating research funds using peer review. The study suggested that each researcher would be given [...]

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    Correcting the scientific record: An introduction to retractions


    The modern scholarly publication system serves as the primary means of communicating scientific results, typically through peer-reviewed articles. While the peer-review process attempts to keep incorrect, plagiarized and fraudulent work out of scientific journals, it doesn’t catch everything. As a result, journals very occasionally need to un-publish an article, a process known as retracting the [...]

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    Scholarly articles and other sources about the Ebola outbreak

    The HealthMap of the ebola outbreak

    While there has been some high quality news reporting about the Ebola outbreak in West Africa, it is also easy to find vague, misleading or erroneous information about the disease and the outbreak. News related to the outbreak may also prompt more folks to explore the scholarly scientific literature on the subject.  The list below [...]

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    Tools for evaluating scholarly journals

    CC-BY-SA Image courtesy of Flickr user Wade M.

    In an information-rich age, one of my main functions as a librarian isn’t helping people find material, but helping them evaluate the material they find. In the past, I’ve discussed how publishers often make it difficult for readers to learn about the review process for a particular journal, and questions authors can ask about potential [...]

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    12 delightful resources for word nerds everywhere

    Book cover: The Mother Tongue

    My recent post about specialized dictionaries got me thinking about the fun books and sites I have encountered about words and language. I thought I would share a slightly off-topic post about my geeky love for words and language. The most recent bit of geeky word stuff I’ve seen is Weird Al Yankovic’s gift to [...]

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