Landmark research! Open access!

“Ladies and gentlemen, we have detected gravitational waves. We did it!” 

Yesterday, scientists from the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-wave Observatory announced they had detected gravitational waves. This discovery is huge news for astronomy, Einstein’s General Theory of Relativity, and physicists all over the world. To make this story even cooler–the publishing journal, Physical Review Letters, released the research via open access!

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Upon the release of the paper, the journal’s website received 10,000 hits per minute. The traffic to the website was so much the servers couldn’t handle it. As the American Physical Society added new serves, the journal’s Twitter account tweeted out the article’s figures for readers turned away from the 404 error.

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What does this much excitement over landmark research mean for an article in the digital scholarly communication environment? The article’s Altmetric badge provides a clear illustration:

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Check it out in real time: http://aps.altmetric.com/details/5333883/news 

 

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