2021 Fall newsletter


* A new issue *

 We have just published CCR 3 (2), with four exciting articles about reaction time measurement (Calcagnotto et al.), the theoretical grounding of CCS (Waldherr et al.), an R package for dealing with syntax trees (Welbers et al.), and automatic analysis of political communication (Praet et al.). The special issue on images as data should also be published in the near future, continuing our steady growth of submissions and publications in our third year. 

 * Funding*

 The University of Amsterdam Diamond Open Access Fund has given us funding to cover most running costs for the coming 3 years, which can hopefully be extended after that. This contribution helps us remain completely free both to the author and reader for the future. 

 * Latex / PDF submissions and rolling publication *

 Our publisher has moved to a new type setter, which allows for articles written in latex to be submitted directly as PDF. The new online-first process should also speed up the production process. Moreover, we are moving to rolling publication, so articles can be directly published as soon as they are accepted. 

 * New article types *

 We have decided to support two new types of submissions. Note that these will be supported for at least the coming year, after which we will evaluate the formats:

Tool/software announcements. Many of us develop software or tools that are useful for a larger part of the community. However, there is no standard way to disseminate these tools to our community, and often there is no clear way to cite (a specific version of) these tools to give them proper attribution. While some tools implement a new method justifying an entire methodology paper, there are also many cases in which a tool is an implementation of an existing method or simply a solution to a practical problem, making it hard to justify a full methods paper. CCR will allow a new type of paper: the software or tool announcement. This is a very short (2-3 page) paper that essentially describes the overall goal of the software and gives a short explanation of how it can be used. These announcements go through editorial review only so they can be published very quickly. The publication will make it clear that it has not been peer reviewed and that no full code review or audit has been performed.


Registered reports. Registered reports implement peer review in a unique, two stage process. RRs are becoming increasingly common in experimental research, but have a special relevance to computational communication research, where the testing of external validity and the publication of null findings are crucial contributions. In the first stage, authors submit a short, typically 1000-2000 word description of research questions, dataset and analysis plan for peer review. Importantly, this submission is made before analysis is actually conducted.  Reviewers then assess the relevance of these questions and the appropriateness of these data and analyses for addressing them.  Reviewers may approve or reject the plan or ask for revisions.  In particular, this enables reviewers to comment on, and encourage authors to adjust, critical early decisions that are hard to undo once a computational project has begun in earnest.  Once the plan is accepted, the authors are given a conditional guarantee of publication -- if the authors show that they have done the analyses they said they would do on the data they said they would obtain, the paper is published, regardless of whether the findings end up being “significant” or particularly novel.