How to cite and reference Typophile for academic research

Chris Dean's picture

Following a request by a student asking how to cite Typophile for her graduate thesis, specifically, how to cite and reference the same person multiple times from the same thread on a forum with pages as opposed to a single scroll. I checked the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, Sixth Edition, only to discover that they actually don’t have a proper way to do this. I expanded upon their recommendation, it and brought it to their attention. The main points are:

1. Provide an in-text citation every time you cite something from Typophile.

2. In your references, regardless of how many times you have cited the same person, you only need a reference for each group of citations by year. Provide another reference should you cite the same person from a different year — which is not uncommon for long threads. Below is an example of four in-text citations which span a two year period, which only requires 2 references:

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In-text citations

“This is the first quote or passage.” (Dean, 2008, September 7, Page 8, 17:33).

“This is the second quote or passage.” (Dean, 2008, December 22, Page 9, 09:02).

“This is the third quote or passage.” (Dean, 2009, January 6, Page 9, 17:45).

“This is the fourth quote or passage.” (Dean, 2009, January 11, Page 11, 12:22).

References

Dean, C. T. (2008). Re: Thread title [Online forum comment]. Retrieved from http://typophile.com/node/101331

Dean, C. T. (2009). Re: Thread title [Online forum comment]. Retrieved from http://typophile.com/node/101331

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I also discovered a reason to use your real name as your screen name: Let’s say you were citing Chris Lozos. You make the appropriate in-text citation (Lozos, C. 2000) and reference, but, when the reviewer goes to check the URL, all they will see is a screen name — dezcom, and they may be unable to validate your source. If a reviewer can’t validate your source they may not let it be published, and you would have to remove content, citation, and reference entirely.

In conclusion, please be mindful that a failure to properly cite and reference a source, even an online forum, is plagiarism.

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