"It is possible that journal impact factor statistics – derived from citation counts – are representative of the theoretical and methodological contributions to a discipline or field, but whether journals with the largest impact factors indicate which journals have the greatest influence on conceptual and methodological progress in the discipline remains open to speculation. The unresolved issue would be of less concern if journal impact factors and citation counts did not have potential consequences for scholars but, as Feeley (2008) observed, 'journal impact rankings provide objective data for tenure, promotion, and, possibly, grant review committees on the quality of scholars’ work. Publication in higher impact journals is often equated with quality of scholarship' (p. 506)."
As currently calculated, journal impact factors do not accurately
represent the intellectual influence of journals or the essays published in them. Accordingly, the relatively low impact factor
for Public Relations Review or Communication Monographs is not very informative about the value of the journal. Rather than
relying on a single metric which Martin (1996) refers to as the “lazy” approach, evaluating the quality of a particular article
or a research program can be better accomplished by actually reading the work in light of the discipline’s standards for
excellence, in addition to perhaps reading the work in which the article in question is cited to determine how, if at all, the piece influenced its citer would lead to a more accurate estimate of influence.