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Daily Archives: March 12, 2024

The Dark World of Citation Cartels

The Chronicle of Higher Education [unpaywalled]: “In the complex landscape of modern academe, the maxim “publish or perish” has been gradually evolving into a different mantra: “Get cited or your career gets blighted.” Citations are the new academic currency, and careers now firmly depend on this form of scholarly recognition. In fact, citation has become so important that it has driven a novel form of trickery: stealth networks designed to manipulate citations. Researchers, driven by the imperative to secure academic impact, resort to forming citation rings: collaborative circles engineered to artificially boost the visibility of their work. In doing so, they compromise the integrity of academic discourse and undermine the foundation of scholarly pursuit. The story of the modern “citation cartel” is not just a result of publication pressure. The rise of the mega-journal also plays a role, as do predatory journals and institutional efforts to thrive in global academic rankings. Over the past decade, the landscape of academic research has been significantly altered by the sheer number of scholars engaging in scientific endeavors. The number of scholars contributing to indexed publications in mathematics has doubled, for instance. In response to the heightened demand for space in scientific publications, a new breed of publishing entrepreneur has seized the opportunity, and the result is the rise of mega-journals that publish thousands of articles annually. Mathematics, an open-access journal produced by the Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, published more than 4,763 articles in 2023, making up 9.3 percent of all publications in the field, according to the Web of Science. It has an impact factor of 2.4 and an article-influence measure of just 0.37, but, crucially, it is indexed with Clarivate’s Web of Science, Elsevier’s Scopus, and other indexers, which means its citations count toward a variety of professional metrics. (By contrast, the Annals of Mathematics, published by Princeton University, contained 22 articles last year, and has an impact factor of 4.9 and an article-influence measure of 8.3.)..

One important citation metric targeted for citational gamesmanship is Clarivate’s prestigious “Highly Cited Researchers” list. “Of the world’s population of scientists and social scientists, Highly Cited Researchers™ are 1 in 1,000,” Clarivate explains. Inclusion on the list occurs first via citation activity: “Each researcher selected has authored multiple Highly Cited Papers™ which rank in the top 1% by citations for their field(s).” That list is then “refined using qualitative analysis and expert judgment.” By and large, Clarivate’s label of Highly Cited Researcher is recognized by the research community as a marker of influence…”

Perplexity brings Yelp data to its chatbot

The Verge: “Perplexity CEO Aravind Srinivas tells The Verge that many people are using chatbots like regular search engines. It makes sense to offer information on things they look for, like restaurants, directly from the source. So it’s integrating Yelp’s maps, reviews, and other details in responses when people ask for restaurant recommendations. “Our underlying… Continue Reading

How to Use Midjourney to Create AI Art

MakeUseOf: “Key Takeaways Get started with Midjourney by downloading Discord and creating an account. Sign up for Midjourney through Discord, choose a subscription plan, and create prompts. Use variations, parameters, and remixes to get different results, before downloading your AI-generated images for creative use. Midjourney is a rare AI image generator that requires a different… Continue Reading

Subjects: AI

What impact does exposure to workplace technologies have on workers’ quality of life?

“This briefing outlines new work that has been done for the Pissarides Review to improve our understanding of the effect that exposure to new workplace technologies is having on workers’ quality of life. Based on a survey of nearly 5000 UK workers, it has, for the first time, been done with reference to the most… Continue Reading

Leaded aviation gasoline exposure risk and child blood lead levels

Leaded aviation gasoline exposure risk and child blood lead levels, PNAS Nexus, Volume 2, Issue 1, January 2023, pgac 285, Published: 10 January 2023. “Lead-formulated aviation gasoline (avgas) is the primary source of lead emissions in the United States today, consumed by over 170,000 piston-engine aircraft (PEA). The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates… Continue Reading

Harvey Eyes ‘All Sorts’ of Lawyers in AI Legal Hiring Spree

Bloomberg: Harvey, a generative artificial intelligence startup that quadrupled in value last year, has spent the first quarter of 2024 embarking on an expansion spree that shows no signs of slowing. “The privately held company, which has 82 employees, wants to double that number by year’s end, said its 29-year-old co-founder and CEO Winston Weinberg… Continue Reading

AI news that’s fit to print

“I just gave this talk at SXSW. It was my first public presentation since starting my new job at The New York Times…this time the topic was AI for journalism. What follows are my slides, script, and references from the talk. Hi, I’m Zach Seward, the editorial director of AI initiatives at The New York… Continue Reading