Social media and the journal as process not product

Moderator Alun Salt, University of Leicester, UK

Social media and the Annals of Botany

Alun Salt, University of Leicester, UK

The Annals of Botany is a company that publishes journals but it does far more than that. The striking feature of the Annals of Botany editorial meeting is that the editors are very proactive in relating to the field of Plant Science. Annals of Botany actively participates in conferences, providing grants and sponsorships, and works to highlight what it feels are important areas of plant science. Through the publication of special issues, it helps shape research agendas. A modern journal is more than a record, it is a participant in research. Social media is a new venue for the scientific process. It is neither publication nor conference discussion but has elements of both as well as novel aspects. Social media can be an outreach activity, but it doesn’t have to be. The challenge for journals is to come up with new and useful practices for social media. Simply republishing press releases or abstracts is not sufficient. Journals have the opportunity to take elements of conference activity, like discussion, and engage in social media as a participant. This adds value to the fields they serve and can put published research within a wider scientific context. It means there is a future for discipline-based journals beyond simply a collection of “articles as homepage”. This session will highlight the value Annals of Botany gives researchers beyond publishing individual papers, which serves as a relevant example for other journals with strong social links to their fields.

Social media and The Lancet group

Sarah Linklater, The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology, London, UK

The Lancet group has developed its social media strategy as a means to engage its readership and enhance their experience of published content, rather than simply as a marketing tool to drive website traffic. The Lancet group also uses social media as a platform to raise awareness of and promote discussion around the many global health issues to which The Lancet group is committed. I will give a brief overview of The Lancet group’s social media strategy and touch on a few points that should be considered when embarking on a new social media strategy for any journal.