From facebook/youtube it is known that if a video/post gets a distinct amount of likes, at some point the overall like number of this video is going to explode due to a network and avalanche effect.
I was recently wondering while thinking about bibliographic metrics like h-index, how much such effects apply in 21st academic publishing and also up to which decade (before internet existed, before strong networks in internet existed) this effect might also retroactive have pushed for instance publications of the 95-00 more than 90-95 years, also the real impact actually was not much higher. Probably this effect can be identified in time by looking when number of worldwide citations exploded, although the number of researchers just grew steadily.
Is the bibliopgraphic science investigating such questions? Any books or review papers I could read. I'm especially wondering which open source data sources there are to tackle such questions, if there are. Best I could google is this:
I'm asking as I'm wondering which citation count is actually necessary in some fields to see if a paper really had an impact on the community, didn't penetrate it, was mediocre. This will depend on community size and field. But I'm wondering how to estimate it, kind of Fermi-problem.