ReaderMeter is a web-based service that compiles readership information about scientific content to create an estimate of the content's community impact.
Licensing and cost
Free – Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike License 3.0
ReaderMeter Alpha was launched in September 2010. It has been unavailable since January 2013 due to hosting issues, and it is unknown when or if the site will be available again. The service does not appear to be currently in development.
Platform and interoperability
As a web application, ReaderMeter is platform agnostic; no browser restrictions are listed on the site. The software was built with PHP, CSS3, JQuery, JSON, and the Google Visualisation API. ReaderMeter compiles its statistics from Mendeley data.
ReaderMeter collects statistics about the number of readers of a given piece of scholarly output by using Mendeley records, which track the number of Mendeley members who download or link to the material. The site then compiles this information into impact metrics for an individual author’s overall body of work and creates a permanent URL for the report. The metrics are adaptations of two established metrics: the H-Index and the G-Index, which focus on scholarly citations rather than readership. Users can find readership statistics for a given publication, including the scientific discipline, academic status and geographic location of readers. A known limitation is that the statistics and corresponding metrics may be skewed due to the difficulty of consistently cross-referencing objects with multiple identifiers and researchers with multiple published versions of their names.
Documentation and user support
The website offers a FAQ and links to an account of the principles underlying and motivating the service. For some elements of the site, explanatory text appears as users hover over the area. Users can contact the site creator through email and twitter.
ReaderMeter uses an extremely simple web interface.
Familiarity with citation indices and the field of alt-metrics is helpful in interpreting report results.
The service includes a JSON interface to render statistics in a machine-readable format. ReaderMeter relies on resource identification standards for compiling its reports; the DOI system is currently the most widely used, but a lack of standards is one of the core problems of the endeavour.
Influence and take-up
No information is available.