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Citing Your Sources
zulufox




msg:924249
 5:00 pm on Apr 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

I do many many academic research papers, so I know how to do everything in MLA style.

However I see most webmasters dont.

Why? Problems?

 

rogerd




msg:924250
 6:11 pm on Apr 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

Most webmasters aren't academics trained in the details of how to properly cite referenced works. Some that DO know how probably just don't bother. Since they won't get graded or peer-reviewed, they may not be overly concerned about the omission of this data. ;)

john_k




msg:924251
 6:21 pm on Apr 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

I have a site that has a database of over 70,000 events and "factoids." I have the source information stored with each, but I don't display it on the website. I display a reference number that people can use if they want to ask me about the source.

Initially, my concern was that it would be VERY easy for students to simply copy the event information along with the source information and turn in homework that looked like they had done a lot of research.

I have since decided that it would probably be okay to make the reference numbers into links that would display the source information for that single item. At least it would take a little more work for someone to fake their research!

One other thought has been to offer that information as part of a premium service. (a lot of journalists and authors also use the site)

At any rate, there is the explanation for at least one such website.

ControlEngineer




msg:924252
 6:24 pm on Apr 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

I do many many academic research papers, so I know how to do everything in MLA style.
However I see most webmasters dont.

Just as many people leave out apostrophes. Sorry, that was a cheap shot that I couldn't resist. I've made worse typos myself.

As for citation style, MLA is one of several styles. APA is another. Legal papers, which typically set records for the number of citations, use "Bluebook" (From Harvard Law) style.

In the publication of academic and scholarly papers on the web, there are questions that need to be resolved in the way the papers are published, including citation style. Personally, at this time I favor the conversion of print ready word processor files to .pdf, keeping the format and styles that would be used in print. Some scholarly journals convert to html, some provide papers in both formats.

There is no question, however, that the need for citations remains the same in web publications as in print publications.

Sorry about starting with a cheap shot; I just can't resist, perhaps because I make so many typos myself.

john_k




msg:924253
 6:33 pm on Apr 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

leave out apostrophes

lol :)

I have been reading some reviews on the UK best-seller "Eats, Shoots & Leaves" that really delves into the decline of proper puncutation. I am probably going to buy a copy, but I am afraid that it might be about me.

Besides apostrophes, the author rants about comma neglect, and also about the wide-spread misuse of exclamation points. (Now I want to edit my previous post in this tread, but I'll leave it as-is.)

Back on topic: What are the thoughts about balancing proper citations while not providing "off the shelf" papers? I am not talking about college level papers, where it is harder to fake original thought and deep analysis, but rather work done by high school and middle school students.

ControlEngineer




msg:924254
 6:57 pm on Apr 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

I have "Eats, Shoots & Leaves" on hold request when my local library gets it in. I may be ordering it, also.

...college level papers, where it is harder to fake original thought and deep analysis,

How, then, did I make it through? ;-}

work done by high school and middle school students.

One comment about publishing work by students (middle, high, college, graduate, etc.): You should make it clear the affiliation of the author. One college professor had to remind his students that some of the papers they were citing were written by high school students and probably were not even of high school quality. A simple "Suzy Smith, seventh grade, East Podunk Middle School" or "Anonymous, seventh grade, East Podunk Middle School" should do.

On your database of "factoids", I think you should provide citations of sources. I assume that entering part of the factoid on Google will bring up your site; teachers do use Google to check student papers now.

john_k




msg:924255
 7:31 pm on Apr 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

One comment about publishing work by students (middle, high, college, graduate, etc.): You should make it clear the affiliation of the author.

Actually, my data sources are books, journals, magazines, and newspapers. Most items have multiple sources. What I was trying to avoid was making it easy for students to do a query on my site, copy the content and the citations, and then do a bit of "customization" for their history project.

I assume that entering part of the factoid on Google will bring up your site; teachers do use Google to check student papers now.

Ah - another reason for at least adding the clickable link.

dragonlady7




msg:924256
 11:04 pm on Apr 23, 2004 (gmt 0)

>teachers do use Google to check student papers now.

My mom, a junior high teacher, catches two or three every semester to whom it never occurs that if they can find information on the Internet, so can she.

I'm all for proper citations. I tend not to bother with the MLA format because my compositions aren't usually as formal-- but I do think it's important to show sources of information. The Internet makes sharing so easy that it becomes increasingly difficult to track down the origins of information. So I'm all for moving against that trend. :)

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