December’s Diatom of the Month marks our 50th blog post! Thank you all for your continued support.

This month we are reflecting on the past year and looking forward to the new one. Keep reading for data and thoughts on our annual readership and last month’s survey responses. At the end, we also invite you to submit your thoughts on highlights from a decade of diatom research, which will be the focus of the January 2020 blog post – we like to hear from you to build a more collaborative, dynamic DOM!

2019 readership report

11 different authors contributed to our 12 blog posts in 2019 (2 posts from the DOM editorial team)

Blog posts featured diatoms from 7 regions worldwide.

There was an average of 275 views, 55 Facebook engagements, and 45 Twitter engagements per blog post

The most viewed blog post of 2019 was April’s Diatoms and Education(Shelly Wu, 522 views)

Since 2018 we have had over 6,500 blog post views!

Survey responses

We received 41 responses to our November survey. Below we present to you the results and how we plan to adjust DOM going forward in response to your feedback.

Respondents are from 17 countries

41% of respondents are in the USA

From diatom-related job demography responses, 97% of respondents are involved in diatom research, whereas from non-diatom-related jobs 1 respondent works in forensic science!

You visit this blog series predominantly to learn about general and new diatom research

You hear about new posts predominantly from DOM social media and DIATOM-L

You really like that DOM focuses specifically on diatoms (is it in the name or something? We’re not here for dissolved organic matter?!)

And you particularly like our affiliation with Young ISDR, the high diversity of our contributors, and posts on diatom ecology and single taxa

You’d like for us to do better about letting you know of new posts and continue posting about public engagement, single taxa, and general research.

You really want summaries of the latest diatom research, plus some Frequently Asked Diatom Questions and marine diatoms posts. Some of you want to be able to listen to us on your commute to work and have another place to chat about diatoms.

You’re not sure whether DOM posts should be peer-reviewed by diatomists and/or non-diatomists.

Our Greatest Hits 2019 album (a.k.a. the posts you liked the most) includes:

  • Diatom Blooms
  • Phylogeny Matters
  • Public (Un)awareness of Diatoms

So how are we going to incorporate your feedback going forward? Here are a few changes we’re hoping to bring you in the new year. Any changes will be in addition to our core mission of bringing you quality information about general and specific diatom research from a group of international experts and guest bloggers. 

  1. Posts will now be released consistently on the last Monday of the month
  2. We will work with other professional organizations, lab groups, and early-career international associations (e.g., YESS, PAGES, INQUA) to better advertise a new post’s release
    • This will also serve to grow our readership
  3. All posts will now include a section at the end: This Month in Diatom Research
    • This section will include very brief summaries of selected recently published diatom work as noticed by our editorial board and submitted by readers
  4. Look for posts on diatoms from the following regions:
    • Marine systems
    • Polar regions
    • South America
    • New Zealand
    • Extreme environments
    • Non-Everglades wetlands
    • African lakes and other freshwater ecosystems
  5. Look for posts on diatom-relatedtopics like:
    • Diatom Frequently Asked Questions
    • Diatoms from a non-expert perspective
    • Education and outreach in diatom research
    • The reach of diatom research: what are we missing
    • Tutorials on diatom methods
  6. We’re considering organizing a special sessionon DOM and diatom outreach at the International Diatom Symposium. Let us know if you would be interested in co-organizing and/or attending!
  7. We’re exploring setting up a podcast, Instagram, multiple posts per month, and a community discussion board. Time and content are the major limitations for creating these, so if you would like to help, please let us know.
Diatom research in the 2010s

With the end of the 2010s tomorrow, we thought it would be appropriate to take some time to look back at a decade of diatom research in January. We, the DOM editorial board, will characterize the number and scope of diatom research articles and make a list of some of the most impactful studies in our respective areas of research.

And we can use your help. Please follow the link below to comment on some of your favorite diatom work of the 2010s.Peer-reviewed articles, news stories, conference presentations, educational tools, outreach events, art, and anything else you can think of are welcome contributions to our decade-in-review!


We want to thank you all for continuing to visit the Diatom of the Month blog series and wish you a happy end to a decade of exciting diatom research. We look forward to bringing you posts on the neatest and newest diatom research in 2020.

If you haven’t had the chance to fill the survey or you want to send us additional or updated feedback anytime please email one of the members of the editorial committee:

  • Luca Marazzi (
  • Sylvia Lee (
  • Annika Vilmi (
  • Nicholas Schulte (
  • Xavier Benito (