Thursday, April 26, 2012

Do Your Students Know How to Cite a Tweet?

A student recently asked me if they could cite a tweet in their research paper. Sure, I said, and led them to the BibMe site. Much to my surprise, none of the websites for MLA citation explained how to cite a tweet. Even EasyBib, which boasts over 59 options for citations, did not list tweet. Yes, it's like quoting someone, but "tweeting" is synonymous with Twitter, and so one needs to somehow mention that in the bibliography. The correct way to cite a tweet is as follows:

THIS IS THE ORIGINAL TWEET:
Huffington Post (real name)  @HuffingtonPost  (user name )
Graphic photo from hospital reveals horrific results of bullying  huff.to/Jq4RCR

The first thing you list is the author's real name, followed by the username in parentheses. If there is no real name, just use the user name. Next, add the full text of the tweet, (make sure you put quotation marks) followed by the date and time of the tweet, including the time zone. The last thing you add is the word Tweet.

HERE'S HOW THE CITED TWEET WOULD LOOK:
Huffington Post (@HuffingtonPost) "Graphic photo from hospital reveals horrific results of bullying  huff.to/Jq4RCR" 25 April 2012, 2:57 p.m. EST. Tweet.


4 comments:

  1. MLA recently officially answered how to cite a tweet on their website:
    http://www.mla.org/style/handbook_faq/cite_a_tweet

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, this is true, but students are using EasyBib, BibMe, Noodle Tools etc. to create the bibliographies for them.

      Delete
  2. The time of the tweet is quite important. The actual time is available in the full record, but that's not easily obtained for most people. I would suggest adding the time zone you're using. For instance, "25 April 2012, 2:57 p.m. EDT"

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for making that point. Yes, it is necessary to add the time zone. I will modify the post to include that.

      Delete

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