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Bluebook Guide

Citing other resources.

  • Introduction
  • Finding the Bluebook
  • Using the Bluebook
  • Federal Courts
  • State Courts
  • Unpublished Opinions
  • Short Forms for Cases
  • Federal Statutes
  • State Statutes
  • Statutes Online
  • Video Tutorials

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The Bluebook contains rules that prescribe how to cite a variety of legal documents. There are too many rules for this introductory guide to cover.  However, the following are rules and examples for other types of legal documents that many first-year law students may need to cite in addition to cases and statutes.

Constitutions

Rule 11 covers how to cite the U.S. Constitution and state constitutions.

A citation to a constitution includes three elements:

  • U.S. or the state abbreviation (see Table 10)
  • Const. ( The Bluebook 's abbreviation for constitution)
  • Section or subdivision 

For example, here is how you would cite the provision of the U.S. Constitution that says that each state shall have two Senators:

U.S. Const. art. I, § 3, cl. 1

Regulations

Rule 14 covers how to cite administrative and executive materials, including U.S. federal regulations. For more information on federal regulations and other types of administrative (i.e., agency) materials, see our Administrative Law Research Guide . 

A citation to a U.S. federal regulation in the  Code of Federal Regulations  (C.F.R.) includes four elements:

  • C.F.R. title number
  • C.F.R. ( The Bluebook 's abbreviation for the Code of Federal Regulations)
  • Section symbol and specific section cited
  • Date of code edition cited

For example, here is how you would cite a federal regulation that prescribes rules for pets in National Parks in the United States:

36 C.F.R. § 2.15 (2017)

For state regulations, follow the citation format provided for the state in Table 1.

Books and Reports

Rule 15 covers how to cite books, reports, and other non-periodic materials, such as encyclopedias.

A basic citation to a book includes the following six elements:

  • Volume number (for multivolume works)
  • Author's full name as it appears on the title page
  • Title of the book (italicized or underlined)
  • Page, section, or paragraph cited
  • Edition (for works with multiple editions)
  • Year of publication

For example, here is a citation to a section in a well-known treatise on federal procedure:

9C Charles Alan Wright & Arthur R. Miller, Federal Practice and Procedure  § 2552 (3d ed. 2008)

Citations to books vary based on the features of a particular publication. For example, the format is slightly different if a book has an editor rather than an author (Rule 15.2). Be sure to carefully review the publication and consult Rule 15 in order to cite it correctly. Additionally, the typeface used for books is different in academic writing. Rather than underlining the title, use small caps (Rule 15).

Tip : Rule 15.8 provides citation formats for several publications commonly used by first-year law students, such as Black's Law Dictionary and legal encyclopedias.

Law Reviews & Other Periodicals

Rule 16 covers how to cite law reviews and journals, newspapers, and other periodic materials.

A citation to a consecutively paginated* journal article includes the following six elements:

  • Author's full name as it appears on the article
  • Title of the article (underlined or italicized)
  • Volume number
  • Journal title abbreviation (see Table 13)
  • First page of the article
  • Date of publication

*A consecutively paginated journal is one in which the page numbers continue throughout a volume as opposed to starting at the number one for each issue.  Most law reviews and academic journals are consecutively paginated.

Here is an example of how to cite an article in the Harvard Journal of Law and Technology:

Dan L. Burk & Julie E. Cohen, Fair Use Infrastructure for Rights Management Systems , 15 Harv. J.L. & Tech. 41 (2001).

For more information on citing law journal articles, watch our  Law Review Citations  tutorial.

Tip : Rule 16.7.6 describes how to cite annotations in American Law Reports (A.L.R.) . 

Online Sources

Rule 18 covers when and how to cite online sources as well as other non-print sources (e.g., films). The rules for specific types of documents often also include a section on how to cite the online version.  For example, Rule 12.5 describes how to cite statutes on Westlaw and Lexis.

Citation formats to online sources are too varied to provide meaningful examples here, so be sure to consult Rule 18 carefully.

Citing to the Record

First-year law students will likely need to cite to depositions, interrogatories, or trial transcripts in the record in order to develop facts for briefs.  As a general rule of thumb, you must cite to the record for every factual assertion you make in a brief.

Bluepages Rule B17 covers how to cite to the record, and the abbreviations that are used in citing to the record are listed in Bluepages Table BT1  (e.g., brief = br.)

The key elements of a citation to the record are as follows:

  • Name of the document (abbreviated according to BT1)
  • Page number where the fact can be found in the document
  • Date of the document, if required (see Rule B17.1.3)

For example, suppose you are asserting as a fact in your brief that a witness, Mr. Dames, saw a blue car speeding through the intersection of Massachusetts Avenue NW and New Jersey Avenue NW in Washington, D.C. The source of this fact is Mr. Dames' deposition testimony.

Your citation for this fact would approximate the following example:

According to Mr. Dames, he was waiting to cross New Jersey Avenue NW outside the Edward Bennett Williams Law Library at approximately 6:15 p.m. on Sept. 3, 2009, when he saw a blue car traveling at approximately 70 miles per hour through the intersection of New Jersey Avenue NW and Massachusetts Avenue NW. Dames Dep. 12, Aug. 7, 2002.

Writing "at" before the page number is generally not required, although it is generally used when citing documents in an appellate record (see Rule B17.1.2).

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Bluebook Legal Citation System Guide

Getting started, six steps to creating a citation, bluebook navigation, bluebook troubleshooting, beyond the bluebook, citing & bluebooking faqs, getting help, what is the bluebook.

The Bluebook is a guide to a system of legal citation frequently used by law schools and law journals. This guide will introduce you to how to use the Bluebook. 

Cover Art

Print copies of the Bluebook are available in the Library in Reference and on Reserve at circulation. Copies can also be purchased in print or online at https://www.legalbluebook.com/ .

References to page numbers in this guide are from the 21st edition.

Before You Start

  • There are other citation formats.
  • Pick the correct one for your project.
  • There are gaps in the Bluebook, particularly for non-traditional and non-U.S. sources.
  • Use the closest analogous rule.
  • Make sure that you are citing the same source or types of sources in the same way. 
  • Keep in mind that the main goal for all citation systems is to make it easy for your reader to find the source you are citing. 

Six Steps to Your Citation

To create a Bluebook citation follow this six step process:

1. Identify the Type of Source

What  type of source do you want to cite?

  • The Bluebook rules are organized by source type
  • Common types include cases, statutes, books and book chapters,  journal articles, web pages, etc.

2. Find the Bluebook Rule

Go to the  Bluebook rule  for that source type. 

  • Check the Quick Guides on the inside cover to identify major source types
  • Use the index to find rules for other types of sources not included in the Quick Guides
  • If you found a traditionally printed source online, review both the rules for the print source and the rules for online sources
  • The print and online rules are often used together

3. Read the Rule & Examples

  • Read the rule carefully
  • Study any examples provided closely
  • Examples are provided inside the front cover, at the beginning of each rule, and within the text of the rules
  • Note which components are required to create a citation for a specific type of source

4. Gather the Citation Components

  • Gather the required components of the citation from your source

5. Draft a Citation

  • Draft a citation that looks like the most relevant example
  • Do your best, but don't worry if your first draft isn't perfect

6. Edit the Citation

  • Edit your draft citation using the Bluebook's style rules and tables
  • Note typeface and punctuation conventions for different types of sources
  • Note the rules for abbreviations and use the tables to abbreviate your citation

The Six-Step Process in Action

To see an example of how this process works with an article from the NY Times website, check out the powerpoint below.

  • PowerPoint Slides: Six-Step Citation Creation Process

Organization & Blue and White Pages

The Bluebook is organized into sections:

  • Style Rules
  • Primary Law
  • Secondary Law
  • Internet & Electronic Sources
  • Foreign & International Materials
  • Tables: Jurisdictions & Abbreviations

Use the Bluepages   when drafting citations that will appear in documents like legal memoranda and court filings. 

Use the Whitepages  when drafting citations that will appear in legal academic publications.

Quick Guides

The Quick Reference inside front and back covers of the print include rule cross references and sample citations for common citation types:

  • Inside Front: Quick Reference: Citations in Law Review Footnotes
  • Inside Back: Quick Reference: Citations in Court Documents & Legal Memoranda

There is also a Quick Style Guide online for common citation types used in law reviews:

  • Online: Quick Style Guide for Citations in Law Review Footnotes

Finding Aids

Consult the following to find the appropriate rule or table for your citation

  • Back cover compact table of contents
  • Full table of contents (pp. IX-XVI)
  • Index (pp. 329-365)

Solving Citation Problems

The Bluebook isn't always clear.  Try the following if you're having difficulty with a citation:

  • Make sure you have the correct rule for your type of resource
  • If your type of resource isn't specifically included, find the one that is most similar
  • If you are citing material for a country that isn't in the Bluebook, find a country with a similar legal system to base your citation on
  • Search recent articles in law reviews on Hein, Westlaw and Lexis. Has anyone else cited this material?
  • Check the resources linked in Beyond the Bluebook 
  • Be consistent with the citation format you pick
  • Make sure to include enough information for a reader to follow in your footsteps.

Library Help

We are not Bluebook experts, but we're happy to help guide you through the Bluebooking process.

  • Provide access to Library copies of the Bluebook
  • Assist you as you navigate Bluebook rules
  • Help you locate supplemental citation guides and self-help materials

We cannot check footnotes for you, proofread your paper or provide authoritative Bluebook interpretations. 

Bluebook Orders, Comments & Corrections

  • The Harvard Law School Library is not affiliated directly with  The Bluebook or the Harvard Law Review Association
  • The Bluebook is compiled by the editors of the Columbia Law Review , the Harvard Law Review, the University of Pennsylvania Law Review , and the Yale Law Journal  and is published and distributed by the Harvard Law Review Association

Please contact the editors of The Bluebook directly ( https://www.legalbluebook.com/ ) with orders, questions, comments or corrections. 

Additional Bluebook Help

Cover Art

  • Bluebook Guide (Georgetown Law Library)
  • Foreign Law by Jurisdiction: Citation (NYU Law) List of citation guides and abbreviation dictionaries for foreign and international law sources.
  • Cornell LII: Introduction to Basic Legal Citation

Over It? Here Are Some Other Options...

  • ALWD Guide to Legal Citation The ALWD (Association of Legal Writing Directors) Guide to Legal Citation explains legal citation formats for all types of legal documents in a clear, pedagogically sound manner. The Guide’s plain language, numerous examples, and clear, integrated structure to explaining the legal system of citation for legal materials is easy for students, professors, practitioners, and judges to understand and use.
  • The Indigo Book The Indigo Book is a free, Creative Commons-dedicated implementation of The Bluebook’s Uniform System of Citation. The Indigo Book was compiled by a team of students at the New York University School of Law, working under the direction of Professor Christopher Jon Sprigman.
  • OSCOLA: Oxford University Standard for Citation of Legal Authorities The Oxford University Standard for Citation of Legal Authorities is designed to facilitate accurate citation of authorities, legislation, and other legal materials. It is widely used in law schools and by journal and book publishers in the UK and beyond.

All Citation/Bluebook FAQs

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  • Table of contents
  • Citing Judicial Opinions ... in Brief
  • Citing Constitutional and Statutory Provisions ... in Brief
  • Citing Agency Material ... in Brief
  • The Bluebook
  • ALWD Citation Manual
  • Introduction
  • Purposes of Legal Citation
  • Types of Citation Principles
  • Levels of Mastery
  • Citation in Transition
  • Who Sets Citation Norms
  • Electronic Resources
  • Judicial Opinions
  • Constitutions & Statutes
  • Agency & Exec. Material
  • Arbitrations
  • Court Rules
  • Law Journal Writing
  • Case Documents
  • Words in Case Names
  • Case Histories
  • Omissions in Case Names
  • Reporters & Courts
  • Spacing & Periods
  • In Citations
  • Items Not Italicized
  • Citations & Related Text
  • Short Form Citations
  • Tables of Authorities
  • Changes in The Bluebook
  • Table: Bluebook
  • Table: ALWD Manual
  • Table: State-Specific Practices

APA Style 7th Edition: Citing Your Sources

  • Basics of APA Formatting
  • In Text Quick View
  • Block Quotes
  • Books & eBooks
  • Thesis/Dissertation
  • Audiovisual
  • Conference Presentations
  • Social Media
  • Legal References

Standard Format

Formatting rules, various examples.

  • Reports and Gray Literature
  • Academic Integrity and Plagiarism
  • Additional Resources
  • Reference Page
  • Legal style order- Title, source, and date (What, Where, When)
  • Optional- provide a URL for the version used
  • Court Cases: Title or name of the case is written in standard type for reference entry (italics for in-text citation)
  • Use this format for enacted bill or resolution not signed into law
  • Bills and resolutions passed by Congress & signed by the President to become law should be cited as statutes

Additional Resources:

Legal Information Institute at Cornell Law School : Guidance on legal citations.  Verify legal references containing necessary information and reflect current statues of legal authority (so you're not using amended, repealed or overturned cases).

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Citation Help for APA, 7th Edition: Legal Materials

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Introduction

When creating legal references in APA Style, most legal materials are cited using the standard legal citation style found in the Bluebook, 20th edition. 

Legal materials include federal and state statutes, court decisions and court cases, executive orders, legislative materials, federal hearings and testimony, federal regulations, patents, constitutions and charters, treaties, and international conventions. 

Copies of the Bluebook , 20th edition can be found on Reserve in the CSS Library. Request Reserve materials as the main circulation desk on the first floor of the Library. 

More Information: For more information about citing legal materials, see Chapter 11 of the APA Manual, 7th edition.

Legal Citation Help

When citing legal sources, APA Style follows the standard legal citation style used across all disciplines. APA provides examples of legal references; however, they advise to consult The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation,  20th edition. Additionally, the APA Manual suggests seeking assistance from law school websites or law libraries. They specifically mention the Legal Information Institute at Cornell Law School to locate free guidance with legal citations.   

More information:

For more information about legal references, see Chapter 11 on pages 355-368 in the APA Manual, 7th edition.

Additionally, when creating legal references, consult The Bluebook , which is on Reserve in the CSS Library. 

  • Intro. to Basic Legal Citation From Cornell Law School
  • State Abbreviations State abbreviations for Legal references. From Cornell Law School.
  • Bluebook Guide From Georgetown Law
  • Bluebook Citation for Legal Materials From OWL Purdue

Variations - URLs?

Some URLs may be long and complicated. APA 7th edition allows the use of shorter URLs. Shortened URLs can be created using any URL shortener service; however, if you choose to shorten the URL, you must double-check that the URL is functioning and brings the reader to the correct website. 

Common URL Shortner websites include:

More Information

For more information about URLs, see Section 9.36 on page 300 of APA Manual, 7th edition. 

NOTE:  Check your instructor's preference about using short URLs. Some instructors may want the full URL. 

Variations - Live Hyperlinks?

Should my urls be live.

It depends. When adding URLs to a paper or other work, first, be sure to include the full hyperlink. This includes the http:// or the https://. Additionally, consider where and how the paper or work will be published or read. If the work will only be read in print or as a Word doc or Google Doc, then the URLs should not be live (i.e., they are not blue or underlined). However, if the work will be published or read online, then APA advises to include live URLs. This would allow the reader to click on a link and go to the source.   

For more information, see Section 9.35 on pages 299-300 of the APA Manual, 7th edition. 

NOTE: Check your instructor's preference about using live URLs. Some instructors may not want you to use live URLs. 

State Statute

Uniform Limited Partnership Act 2001, Minn. Stat.  § 321.0101-1208 (2001 & rev. 2004).  https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/cite/321

Name of the Act:  Uniform Limited Partnership Act 2001,

Begin the reference with the name of the act. Capitalize all majors words in the title of the act. After the title of the act, add a comma.  

Source:  Minn. Stat.

Next, add the official source for the state statutes. For Minnesota, it is the Minnesota Statutes. Use the official abbreviation, which is "Minn. Stat." Be aware that there is a period after each abbreviation, and there is a space between each abbreviation.   

Section Number:   §  321.0101-1208

Next, add the section number of the statute. Before the section number, add the section symbol ( §).  Then, add the first section number, a hyphen, and the last section number. Do not add a period after the section numbers. NOTE: You can find the symbol for section numbers in Word by following these steps: click on the "Insert" tab, then "Symbol," then "More Symbols," and then "Special Characters."  

Year: (2001 & rev. 2004).

Next, add the year the statute was codified in the state statutes. This statute was first codified in 2001. It was then revised in 2004. After the date the statute was first codified, add an ampersand (&), then the abbreviation for revised (rev.), and then the date it was revised.   

URL: https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/cite/321

Complete the reference with the web address (URL) where the act can be found. For most course papers, you will want to remove the hyperlink from the URL. Additionally, do not add a period after the URL. NOTE: Check your instructor's preference for live hyperlinks. In general, if the assignment is an online assignment (e.g., Brightspace discussion, webpage, etc.), then keep the live hyperlinks. If the assignment is a paper, then remove the hyperlinks.    

More Information:

For more information about state statutes, see Section 11.5 on pages 361-363 and example 13 on page 363 of the APA Manual, 7th edition. 

Parenthetical Citation Example

(Uniform Limited Partnership Act, 2001/2004)

Narrative Citation Example

The Uniform Limited Partnership Act (2001/2004) set up ...

For more information about author format in parenthetical and narrative citations, see Section 8.17 and Table 8.1 on page 266 of the APA Manual, 7th edition. 

Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993, 29 U.S.C.  § 2601-2654 (2006). 

https://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?path=/prelim@title29/chapter28&edition=prelim

Name of the Act:  Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993,

Title number: 29.

Next, add the title number where the act can be found. Title numbers identify the subject matter for the statute.   

Source:  U.S.C.

Next, add the official source for federal statutes, which is the United States Code. Use the official abbreviation, which is "U.S.C." Be aware that there are no spaces between each letter of the abbreviation and there is a period after each letter.   

Section Number(s):   § § 2601-2654

Next, add the section number of the statute. Before the section number, add the section symbol ( §).  Many statutes are divided into multiple sections and subsections. If the act you are referring to has more than one section, add two section symbols before first section number. Then, add the first section number, a hyphen, and the last section number. Do not add a period after the section numbers. NOTE: You can find the symbol for section numbers in Word by following these steps: click on the "Insert" tab, then "Symbol," then "More Symbols," and then "Special Characters."  

Year: (2006).

Next, add the year the statute was codified in the United States Code.   

URL:  https://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?path=/prelim@title29/chapter28&edition=prelimhttps://uscode.house.gov/view.xhtml?path=/prelim@title29/chapter28&edition=prelim

For more information about statutes, see Section 11.5 on pages 361-363 and examples 8-12 on pages 362-363 of the APA Manual, 7th edition. 

(Family & Medical Leave Act of 1993, 2006)

Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (2006) established ...

For more information about author format within parenthetical and narrative citations, see Section 8.17 and Table 8.1 on page 266 of the APA Manual, 7th edition. 

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Researching a Legal Topic

Citing to legal documents.

The most frequently used style manual for citing to Legal Documents is the The Bluebook : a uniform system of citation.  APA, MLA and Chicago Manual of Style all refer to the Bluebook for citing to certain documents such as cases. 

Below are links to online guides and information on accessing The Bluebook.  

  • Introduction to Basic Legal Citation from Legal Information Institute This website, produced at Cornell Law School, provides a "how to cite" section which is very useful.

BC Community Only

  • The Bluebook : a uniform system of citation (PRINT O'Neill Reference KF245 .B58) The Bluebook is used by most legal practitioners for proper citations to legal materials. The front cover and first page have examples of citations to cases and law review articles.

Legal Citation Basics

A legal citation is a reference to a legal document such as a case, statute, law review article, etc.

Most legal citations consist of the name of the document (case, statute, law review article), an abbreviation for the legal series, and the date. 

The abbreviation for the legal series usually appears as a number followed by the abbreviated name of the series and ends in another number.

For example: Morse v. Frederick, 551 U.S. 393 (2007) is a citation to a Supreme Court case which can be found in volume 551 of the United States Reports (U.S.) beginning on page 393.

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  • Subjects: Law
  • Tags: law laws legal laws supreme_court federal state

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  • Law Library

Legal Citations

  • How to Read a Legal Citation
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  • Citation Training and Guides
  • Citation Tools

Tools for Reading Citations

  • Prince's Bieber Dictionary of Legal Abbreviations by Mary Miles Prince Call Number: KF246 .B46 2017 (Location: Reference) Publication Date: 2017-01-01 The best guide for deciphering cryptic abbreviations.
  • Cardiff Index to Legal Abbreviations (Online Resource) Web-based service allows you to search for the meaning of abbreviations for English language legal publications, from the British Isles, the Commonwealth and the United States, including those covering international and comparative law. A wide selection of major foreign language law publications is also included.

Definition of a Legal Citation

A citation (or cite) in legal terminology is a reference to a specific legal source, such as a constitution, a statute, a reported case, a treatise, or a law review article.  A standard citation includes first the volume number, then the title of the source, (usually abbreviated) and lastly, a page or section number.

IMPORTANT NOTE: This guide is not meant to provide guidance for correct legal citation format; rather, it is a basic guide to understanding the parts of a legal citation and a list of sources for looking up legal abbreviations. Be sure to follow the rules of your particular court for proper citation format.

Case Citations

Case citations designate the volume number of the reporter in which the case appears, the name of the reporter, the page on which the case begins, and the year the decision was rendered.  Thus, each citation is unique.  Cases, or judicial opinions, can be published by more than one publisher.  If this occurs, the case name may be followed by one or more “parallel citations.”  The official reporter is the one with whose publisher the court has contracted to publish the reports; any other citation is called “unofficial.”  (Sometimes a case will have only an unofficial citation, such as in the Federal Reporter; then the “unofficial” cite will be listed alone.)  The text of the opinions will be the same in the official or unofficial sources, but the unofficial may contain additional editorial features which differ from the official.    In California, the State Supreme Court cases are published officially in the California Reports, series 1-4; the Court of Appeals cases are officially published in the California Appellate Reports, series 1-4.  Unofficial reports are published by West; Supreme Court and Appellate Court decisions are published together in the West’s California Reporter, series 1, 2 & 3.  The Supreme Court decisions are also published in the Pacific Reporter, series 1, 2 & 3. 

Here are examples of citations for California:

how to cite an article law

Federal cases are cited in the same format as California cases.  For United States Supreme Court cases, the official reports, United States Reports, (abbreviated “US”) are published by the U.S. Government.  There are two parallel citations for Supreme Court cases: those published by West in the Supreme Court Reporter are abbreviated “S.Ct.”; those published by LexisNexis, the United States Supreme Court Reports, Lawyers’ Edition, are abbreviated “L.Ed.” or “L.Ed. 2d”  Court of Appeals cases, published only in West’s Federal Reporter, are abbreviated “F.,” “F. 2d.” or “F. 3d.”  Federal District Court cases are published only in West’s Federal Supplement, abbreviated “F. Supp.” or “F. Supp. 2d”  

how to cite an article law

Code Citations

Citations to California Codes do not begin with numbers; instead, the title of the code name is followed by the section number, the publisher, and the date of the volume (not the date the individual code section was enacted).  Parallel cites are not used for the code, since there is no official code for California.  The version of the unofficial code used (Deering’s or West) is indicated in the date portion of the citation.

how to cite an article law

Citations to the United States Code follow the same general format as cases; however, the first number refers to the title of the United States Code rather than a volume number, and the second number refers to the section number of the code rather than the page number.  Parallel cites are not used for the code, since the numbering is uniform for both official and unofficial codes.  The unofficial codes are designated by their own abbreviations, U.S.C.A. (West) and U.S.C.S. (Lexis). 

how to cite an article law

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Guide for Law Journal Students

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  • Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Requests
  • Source Gathering Assignments: Finding Sources

The Bluebook

Advanced bluebooking cheat sheet for journal editors, past practices and peer journals.

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  • Style, Grammar & Spelling Conventions

The 21st edition of The Bluebook was released in 2020. For an overview of the differences between the 20th and 21st editions, please see the Bluebook 101 guide . Citations in law journal articles adhere to the white pages, not the blue pages.

how to cite an article law

  • Advanced Bluebook Cheat Sheet

how to cite an article law

Authors frequently include incorrect pincites or do not include pincites at all when citing to or quoting books, which makes your job of verifying the support for their assertions challenging. Although the full text of many sources obtained through electronic databases can easily be searched, it is generally a time-consuming process to look through print, physical books for the relevant pages that support the claims being made in the article.

Google Books can often assist you in figuring out the correct page numbers where support for particular assertions are located in a book. After conducting a search of a quote, the snippets in your results may quickly identify the page number where the quote appears in the book.

Amazon's "Search Inside This Book" feature can also enable you to confirm page numbers.

Sometimes you will encounter a citation that does not seem similar to any of the examples provided in The Bluebook . For guidance, one trick is to look at the practices of other peer law reviews to see how they have cited your source in previously published articles. Of course, the editors of that law journal may have been incorrect in their decision on how to properly cite the source, but it is still often helpful to see how other editors have interpreted the rules.

To easily search the content of other law journals for your source, you may wish to create a group of peer journals on Westlaw :

1. After logging in, you should see a "Favorites" box on the right hand side. (If you do not, scroll down to the bottom of the page, select "Edit home page," and then check "Favorites.") Click on "Organize."

how to cite an article law

2. Click on "Add a Group."

how to cite an article law

3. Create a new group for "Peer Journals" and click on "Done Organizing" after saving it.

how to cite an article law

4. Click "Secondary Sources" on the main home page and then "Law Reviews & Journals." Click on "Massachusetts" and then "Harvard Law Review." 

how to cite an article law

5. Click on the star next to its name to add it to your "Peer Journals" folder. Repeat the process for the Yale Law Journal , the University of Pennsylvania Law Review , and the Columbia Law Review . These four law reviews compile The Bluebook . You should also repeat the process for your own law journal.

how to cite an article law

6. When you return to the home page, you should see these journals listed under "Peer Journals" in the "Favorites" section. You can now easily search the content of these specific law journals.

how to cite an article law

7. After finding an article that cites your source or a source similar to it in a law journal through Westlaw, you can check to see how the citation looks in the final, published version by looking at a copy of the article in the HeinOnline Law Journal Library .

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  • Last Updated: Feb 12, 2024 4:08 PM
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Apa 7th ed. style guide: legal sources.

  • Getting Started
  • Scholarly Journal Articles
  • Books, Reports, Gray Literature & Presentations
  • News & Blogs
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  • Datasets & Tests
  • Legal Sources
  • Government Documents This link opens in a new window
  • Citing Sources in Text
  • Tables & Figures This link opens in a new window
  • Formatting an APA Paper
  • APA Sample Paper This link opens in a new window

On This Page

Cases or Court Decisions

U.S. Supreme Court

U.S. Circuit Court

U.S. District Court

Statutes (Laws and Acts)

Federal statute

State statute in state code

Legislative Materials

Federal testimony

Full federal hearing

Unenacted federal bill or resolution

Federal report

Administrative and Executive Materials

Federal regulation, codified

Federal regulation, not yet codified

Executive order

Legal References

  • In APA Style, most legal materials are cited in the standard legal citation style used for legal references across all disciplines. This legal style has notable differences from other APA Style formats.
  • For more information on preparing legal references, consult  The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation .

Key Differences Between APA Style References and Legal References

Sample citations - cases or court decisions.

U.S. Supreme Court

  • Decisions from the U.S. Supreme Court are published in the United States Reports  (other reporters may also publish Supreme Court decisions). Cite Supreme Court decisions as published in the  United States Reports  whenever possible; cite the  Supreme Court Reporter  for cases that have not yet been published in  United States Reports.  
  • Unlike other reference types, the title or name of a case is written in standard type in the reference list entry and in italic type in the in-text citation.
  • For cases that have not yet been assigned a page number, include three underscores instead of the page number in the reference list entry. (see example below)
  • Reference list : Name v. Name, Volume U.S. Page (Year). URL
  • Parenthetical citation : ( Name v. Name , Year)
  • Narrative citation : Name v. Name (Year)

Example: U.S. Supreme Court case, with a page number

how to cite an article law

Example: U.S. Supreme Court case, without a page number

how to cite an article law

  • Decisions from the U.S. Circuit Court are published in the  Federal Reporter .
  • The title or name of a case is written in standard type in the reference list entry and in italic type in the in-text citation.
  • Reference list : Name v. Name, Volume F. [ or  F.2d, F.3d] Page (Court Year). URL

how to cite an article law

  • Decisions from the U.S. District Court are published in the  Federal Supplements .
  • Reference list : Name v. Name, Volume F. Supp. Page (Court Year). URL

how to cite an article law

Sample Citations - Statutes (Laws and Acts)

Federal Statute:

  • Federal statutes are published in the  United States Code  (U.S.C.). The U.S.C. is divided into sections, called titles-- for example, Title 42 refers to public health and welfare. 
  • Reference List : Name of Act, Title Source § Section Number (Year). URL
  • Parenthetical Citation : (Name of Act, Year)
  • Narrative Citation : Name of Act (Year)

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State Statute in State Code

  • Consult the  Bluebook  for formats of other states. 

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Sample Citations - Legislative Materials

Federal Testimony:

  • For the title of the federal testimony, include the title as it appears on the work and the subcommittee and/or committee name (if any), separated by a comma. Then provide the number of the Congress, the year in parentheses, and "testimony of" followed by the name of the person who gave the testimony in separate parentheses. When the testimony is available online, also include a URL.
  • Reference List : Title of testimony, xxx Cong. (Year) (testimony of Testifier Name). URL
  • Parenthetical Citation : (Title of testimony, Year)
  • Narrative Citation : Title of testimony (Year)

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Full Federal Hearing

  • For the title of a full federal hearing, include the name of the hearing and the subcommittee name. Provide the number of the Congress and year. When a video or other information about the hearing is available online, include its URL.
  • Reference List : Title of hearing , xxx Cong. (Year). URL
  • Parenthetical Citation : ( Title of hearing , Year)
  • Narrative Citation : Title of hearing (Year)

undefined

Unenacted Federal Bill or Resolution

  • The number should be preceded by "H.R." (House of Representatives) or "S." (Senate), depending on the source of the unenacted bill or resolution.
  • Reference List : Title [if relevant], H.R. or S. bill number, xxx Cong. (Year). URL
  • Reference List : Title [if relevant], H.R. or S. resolution number, xxx Cong. (Year). URL
  • Parenthetical Citation : (Title, Year)
  • Narrative Citation : Title (Year)

undefined

Federal Report

  • For reports submitted to the House of Representatives, use the abbreviation "H.R. Rep. No." in the reference list entry and "House of Representatives Report No." in the in-text citation.
  • For reports submitted to the Senate, use the abbreviation "S. Rep. No." in the reference list entry and "Senate Report No." in the in-text citation.

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Sample Citations - Administrative and Executive Materials

Federal Regulation, Codified:

  • Official federal regulations are published in the  Code of Federal Regulations . In the reference, provide the title or number of the regulation, the volume number in which the regulation appears in the  Code of Federal Regulations , the abbreviation "C.F.R.", the section number, and the year in which the regulation was codified. If the regulation is available online, provide the URL.
  • Use the section symbol (§) and the section number in the reference. 
  • Reference List : Title or Number, Volume C.F.R. § xxx Page (Year). URL
  • Parenthetical Citation : (Title or Number, Year)
  • Narrative Citation : Title or Number (Year)

undefined

Federal Regulation, Not Yet Codified

  • Reference list : Title or Number, Volume F.R. Page (proposed Month Day, Year) (to be codified at Volume C.F.R. § xxx). URL
  • Parenthetical citation : (Title or Number, Year)
  • Narrative citation : Title or Number (Year)

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Executive Order

  • Executive orders are reported in Title 3 of the  Code of Federal Regulations , so "3 C.F.R." is always included in the reference list entry for an executive order.
  • Reference list : Exec. Order No. xxxxx, 3 C.F.R. Page (Year). URL
  • Parenthetical citation : ( Exec. Order No.  xxxxx, Year)
  • Narrative citation : Exec. Order No.  xxxxx (Year)

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  • Last Updated: Aug 17, 2023 3:04 PM
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Bluebook Legal Citation

  • Intro signals: E.g., See, See also, Cf., etc.
  • Order of authorities
  • Pages, Paragraphs, and Pincites
  • Short form: Id., Infra, Supra, Hereinafter
  • Typeface conventions
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Periodical Examples

Author rules, title rules, consecutively paginated periodicals, non-consecutively paginated periodicals, short form rules.

  • Digital Materials
  • The Greenbook
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  • Additional Resources

Consecutively Paginated Periodical Example (including most law journals):

Pamela Samuelson,  Functionality and Expression in Computer Programs: Refining the Tests for Software Copyright Infringement , 31  Berkeley Tech L.J. 1215 (2016).

Non-Consecutively Paginated Periodical Example (including most newspaper and magazines):

Adam Satariano,  Law Bolsters Copyrights in Europe , N.Y. Times , Mar. 27, 2019, at B1.

Bluebook Rule (21st): 16.2

Law Review Typeface: Ordinary

Authors of periodical articles are cited in much the same way as the Bluebook rule for authors of books and treatises, as discussed here in this guide. 

If an article has two authors, list both authors connected by an ampersand in the same order as they are listed in the original source:

Yuval Karniel & Stephen Bates , Copyright in Second Life , 20 Alb. J.L. Sci. & Tech. 433 (2010).

If an article has three or more authors, it is permissible to either give the first author's name followed by " et al. " or list all authors as they appear.

Melissa L. Tatum, et al. , Does Gender Influence Attitudes Toward Copyright in the Filk Community? , 18 Am. U. J. Gender Soc. Pol'y & L. 219 (2009).

Typically, it is only necessary to list all authors when the identity of each author is important.

NOTE: When listing three or more authors, separate each name with a comma except for the final name, which is separated only by an ampersand without a comma.

Melissa L. Tatum, Robert Spoo & Benjamin Pope , Does Gender Influence Attitudes Toward Copyright in the Filk Community? , 18 Am. U. J. Gender Soc. Pol'y & L. 219 (2009).

Bluebook Rule (21st):  16.3

Law Review Typeface: Italics

A periodical article's title should be included in full, just as it appears in the original source, but should be in italics and capitalized according to Bluebook rule 8 .

If a word (such as a case name) is italicized in the title in the original source, this word should appear in ordinary Roman type in the citation.

Kristina N. Spencer, Using Copyright Remedies to Promote Efficiency in the Open Source Regime in Wake of Jaobsen v. Katzer , 6 J.L. Econ. & Pol'y. 63 (2009) .

NOTE: Additional guidance as to which words should appear in ordinary Roman type is found in Bluebook rule 2.2 .

Bluebook Rule (21st):  16.4

The proper Bluebook citation for articles appearing in consecutively paginated journals is author, title,  volume number , abbreviation of the periodical name , first page of the article , and specific pages cited ( if any), and year:

Pamela Samuelson,  Functionality and Expression in Computer Programs: Refining the Tests for Software Copyright Infringement , 31  Berkeley Tech L.J.  1215, 1258–67 (2016).

If a journal does not otherwise indicate the volume number, but does continuous pagination across issues, use the year as the volume number.

Volume numbers should always be given as Arabic numerals even if the original source uses Roman numerals.

Indicate special issues and publications if they do not conform to the consecutively paginated publication schedule.

Note: Issue numbers are never included in Bluebook citations, even if readily indicated in the original source.

Example:  Paul D. Clement,  Theory and Structure in the Executive Branch , 2011  U. Chi. Legal. F. 1.

Journal Name

The name of the journal should be written using small caps type face.

Example:   Tex. L. Rev.

Journal names are always abbreviated according to tables T6 ,  T10 , and T13 .

NOTE : Previous editions of the Bluebook sometimes included multiple abbreviations for the same word, depending on the context. Abbreviations intended for use in case names appeared in table T6 , but a different abbreviation for the same word might appear in table T13  for periodical titles. The 21st edition of the Bluebook has brought these tables into alignment, creating a unified set of abbreviations across T6 , T10 , and T13 , with one abbreviation per word. 

Pages and Pincites In your citation to a journal article, immediately following the name of the journal, you should indicate the page on which the article begins. Immediately after the first page, you should place a comma followed by a pinpoint citation to specific pages after a comma. 

Bluebook Rule (21st):  16.5

The proper bluebook citation for nonconsecutively paginated journals and magazines is:  author , title of work (in italics) , periodical name (in small caps) , date of issue as it is on the cover , the word at , first page of the work . 

Adam Satariano, Law Bolsters Copyrights in Europe , N.Y. Times , Mar. 27, 2019, at B1. 

If there is no author, you should begin the citation with the title.

Bluebook Rule (21st):   16.9

Law Review Typeface: Id . and supra should be in italics.

Use id.  when the work is cited immediately previously, either in the same footnote or as the only authority in a previous footnote.

For  supra , include the author's last name before the  supra . If there is no author, use the title, or use "hereinafter" to establish a short name for the citation. 

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  • Last Updated: Sep 6, 2023 10:57 AM
  • URL: https://tarlton.law.utexas.edu/bluebook-legal-citation

Northwestern Pritzker School of Law Logo

Pritzker Legal Research Center

  • Law Journals' Guide to Source & Cite
  • Interlibrary Loan

Citations to Articles

Locating law journal articles, locating non-law journal articles, articles available in print at nu, interlibrary loan - when to request a journal article via ill.

  • Newspapers & Magazines
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  • Citation Help

Bluebook Rule 16 covers citations to articles.  A typical article citation follows the following format:

Author's name, Title of Article, Journal Volume #, Abbreviation of Journal, Page on which article begins, span of specific pages being cited, date of publication. 

HeinOnline's Law Journal Library contains the most complete coverage of law-related periodicals in PDF format. It contains complete runs of titles - from the first issue published through the most-currently published issues for most journals. 

If you are not on campus, connect to the VPN or select Northwestern from the drop-down menu after running your search.

how to cite an article law

Tip 1 : If you can't find the article by copying & pasting the citation, try browsing for the journal title in the Hein Law Journal Library and then narrow by volume and page number.

Tip 2:  If you're having trouble deciphering an abbreviation in a journal citation, you can try looking it up in the  Cardiff Index to Legal Abbreviations .  It will give you the name of the publication, and it's easier to use than the Bluebook tables.

To find an article published in a non-legal journal, use Northwestern's Journal Search tool . You can also access the tool using the Find a Journal button on the homepage of the library's website. This tool will let you see if we have access to the title in any of our databases. Note that one journal may be available in multiple databases and that the dates of coverage may vary between databases.

how to cite an article law

Students may also be interested in trying two new browser extensions which aim to help researchers gain free access to copies of articles by searching open access repositories.

  • Open Access Button

Not all databases will provide PDFs copies of the articles. Some databases will provide the article in an html format and it is not generally easy to tell from the links what the format will be.  

Examples of databases that do include PDFs are:

  • HeinOnline Hein Online provides access to a vast PDF collection of legal research materials, including law journals (many of which date back to the 1800s) and a wide range of primary sources on the history of Anglo-American law.
  • JSTOR Digitized, full-text versions of core scholarly journals across disciplines.While coverage of these journals goes back to the first issue, for most journals the most recent issues will be for 3-5 years ago.
  • Academic Search Complete Multidisciplinary coverage of journal literature, including biological sciences, economics, communications, computer sciences, engineering, language and linguistics, arts and literature, medical sciences and women's studies. Provides citations and abstracts for nearly 2900 scholarly journals (1666 peer-reviewed), as well as over 1250 full-text titles.

If an article is available only in print through any of Northwestern's campus libraries ,  ( e.g. , Law Library, Main Library, etc.), place a scan request in NUsearch .

  • Sign in with your NetID
  • Select Request
  • Select Law Library as your pickup location
  • Ex., NULR 117.1 Smith, need article by Reich, 73 Yale L.J. 733-738

Library staff will scan the relevant pages from the print journal volume and save them to a shared OneDrive folder for your journal. 

If Northwestern does not have access to the article and if you cannot find excerpts of the relevant pages through non-NU alternatives, request the article through Interlibrary Loan. See the Interlibrary Loan page for details on placing requests.

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  • Last Updated: Aug 25, 2023 3:58 PM
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How to Cite U.S. Government Documents in APA Citation Style: Federal Laws/Statutes

  • House and Senate Reports and Documents
  • Congressional Hearings & Testimony
  • Congressional Record
  • Congressional Bills and Resolutions
  • Federal Laws/Statutes

Statute (law/act) appears in a single section of the United States Code

Statute (act/law) spans a range of sections in the united states code, statute (public law/act) is spread out among different sections of the code, law (statute) does not yet appear in the united states code.

  • Executive Documents -- Presidential Papers, Proclamations and Executive Orders
  • Rules/Regulations -- Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.) and the Federal Register
  • Foreign Relations of the United States
  • State Legislative Documents
  • State Statutes (Laws)
  • Court Cases
  • Government Agencies
  • Other legal citations

Statutes (laws/acts) are "codified" on a continuous basis in the online United States Code (U.S.C.) by the Office of Law Revision Counsel. In general, you should cite statutes (laws/act) to their location in the online United States Code (U.S.C.)

You can find the relevant U.S.C. title and section(s) in the text of the law. You can find official sources of the law in:

  • Congress.Gov: Public Laws (1974 - current)
  • Govinfo: Statutes at Large (1951- 2013) 
  • Proquest Congressional Publications (library subscription database)

In the U.S.C., or in the Public Law, look for statements about where the law applies to the Code ( U.S.C. "Titles" and "sections" ) .

  • If the law spans a ranges of sections, add "et seq." after the U.S.C. number to indicate "and what follows." Note: You do not include U.S.C. "chapters" in citations.
  • If the statute (law/act) is spread out among scattered sections of the U.S.C . , and you wish to cite the law as a whole, cite using the Public Law number, and include the parallel citation to the law's location in the Statutes at Large , when available.
  • If the statute (law/act) does not appear in the United States Code , cite using the Public Law number, and include the parallel citation to its location in Statutes at Large, when available.

See examples, below.

When a statute is codified in a single section of the United States Code (U.S.C.), cite to the U.S.C..

Example: Impact Aid Coronavirus Relief Act .

In the header for this Act, you will see the U.S.C. citation: 20 U.S.C. § 6301. This is the start of the range of sections it applies to, but if you read this Act closely, you will see that the Act itself appears in section 7705, Impact Aid .

In Reference List:

  • Impact Aid Coronavirus Relief Act. 20 U.S.C § 7705 (2020).

Explanation: This Act appears (was codified) in a single section of the the U.S.C. in Title 20, section 7705, in 2020.

Note: You can find the section symbol in Word > Insert > Symbols > Special Characters

  • (Impact Aid Coronavirus Relief Act, 2020)
  • Impact Aid Coronavirus Relief Act (2020)

If the law spans a ranges of sections, add " et seq. " after the U.S.C. number to indicate "and what follows."

Tip: Browse and search the official United States Code to find the "reference notes: "

Pub. L. 111–260, §1(a), Oct. 8, 2010, 124 Stat. 2751 , provided that: "This Act [enacting sections 615c and 616 to 620 of this title , amending sections 153, 225, 303, 330, 402, 503, 610, and 613 of this title , and enacting provisions set out as notes under sections 153, 303, 613, and 619 of this title ] may be cited as the 'Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2010'."

  • (Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act, 2020)
  • Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act (2020)

Twenty-First Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act of 2020. 47 USC 609  et seq. (2009). URL

When a statute applies to numerous sections of the Code , and you wish to cite the Act as a whole, cite using the Public law number.

To determine where the statute is codified (where it appears in the United States Code ), follow this process:

  • Find the U.S.C. number listed in the header of the law. For example, the Energy Policy Act of 2005 includes this location in the United States Code: 42 U.S.C. § 15801 .

Energy Policy Act of 2005, Pub. L. No. 109-58, 119 Stat. 594 (2005). https://www.congress.gov/109/plaws/publ58/PLAW-109publ58.pdf

Explanation: In the example above, Pub. L. No. 109-58 refers to Public Law number 58  from the 109th Congress, with a parallel citation to its location in volume 119, page 594 of the US Statutes at Large (119 Stat. 594). Because I retrieved this from a publicly available website, rather than an academic database, the URL is appended to the end.

  • (Energy Policy Act, 2005)
  • Energy Policy Act (2005)

If the law has just passed and does not yet appear in the United States Code, cite to the Public Law Number with a parallel citation to its location in Statutes at Large.

Example: If you were citing this law shortly after it passed in 2005, and it had not yet appeared in the United States Code.*

* There may be only a few months lag between when a law is passed and when it appears in the United States Code. See Office of Law Revision Council, Currency and Updating .

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  • Last Updated: Aug 7, 2023 2:19 PM
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Source Pulling and Cite Checking for Journal Members

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The Bluebook

But the bluebook is unclear... additional resources, find similar citations in peer journals, ask us anything.

Law librarians and library staff are available to help you find your way around the library and its legal materials, provide research support, and assist you in locating materials that are not in our library. You can find the latest information about our hours and services on the library homepage . There are several ways to contact us:

In Person : The Borrowing Services Desk and Reference Office are on the main floor of the law library. Online and in-person appointments with the reference staff can be made from the library homepage . 

Borrowing Services Desk: (650) 723-2477 Reference Desk: (650) 725-0800

Cite checking is primarily about making sure the sources cited in the footnotes support the author's associated claims. Basically, you're helping make sure the article is "good," as in accurate (the citation content and format leads the reader to the correct source), valid (the source actually supports the author's claim/statement), non-plagiarized (every proposition is properly credited), and useful (the citation provides value to the reader). 

Try these questions as you review both the article text (above the line text) and the footnotes:

  • Is a citation needed? 
  • Does the cited authority support the statement made in the text?
  • Are the introductory signals and parentheticals appropriate according to Bluebook Rule 1? If none present, are one or both needed?
  • Does the citation include all necessary content (including pincites) and is it formatted properly? (per Bluebook/your journal's style manual)

All cite checking involves the use of a citation system. The Bluebook is one of the most common, but there are others, including ALWD, MLA, APA, the California Style Manual, etc. Check with your journal to ensure you refer to the appropriate system, and make sure you review any additional style rules specific to your journal; these are usually provided during editor onboarding. For more details on citation systems, see the boxes below. 

The Bluebook is the most common system of legal citation used for journal articles. Copies of the Bluebook are available to use in the library from the Reference office on the first floor. The Bluebook is also available online; your journal may provide a subscription, or you purchase  subscriptions at different price points for 1, 2, and 3-year access. Currently, a subscription provides access to both the 20th and 21st editions of the Bluebook. The content is the same as in the print version, except there is no index in the online version (full-text searching is available in lieu). 

Notes on the 21st Edition & Table 2

The 21st edition of the Bluebook, released in July 2020, makes several changes from the 20th edition. For a summary of the changes, see the Preface to the 21st Edition on the Bluebook's website. Table T2, covering foreign jurisdictions, has been removed from the print edition but is freely available online:  Link to T2 on the Bluebook's website.  

Using the Bluebook

  • Rules 1-9 cover general citation and style rules, such as when to use signals, how to treat quotations, correct use of supra, etc.
  • Rules 10-21 cover specific types of sources; for example magazines fall under Rule 16, and statutes under Rule 12
  • Table 1 includes lots of substantive information arranged by jurisdiction; what reporters to cite for a specific state, etc. 
  • Table 2 covers similar information as T1, but for foreign jurisdictions. It is available online , not in the print Bluebook
  • Tables 3, 4, and 5 also contain substantive info on various topics
  • Tables 6-16 provide abbreviations: T6 for common words and T10 for geographic terms, T12 for months, and T13 for institutions 

If you have a print copy, use the back cover to jump quickly to rules or tables, and use the inside of the front cover for quick examples of commonly used rules. If you use the online version, go ahead and pin rules you often use for easy access. 

how to cite an article law

Sometimes The Bluebook can be ambiguous or does not contain a good example for how to cite a source you may encounter. In many situations, you may need to consult your law journal's internal style manual ( e.g. , The Redbook ). Additionally, the following resources are designed to offer guidance on using The Bluebook . 

Cover Art

You will encounter some citations that do not seem similar to any of the examples provided in The Bluebook . For guidance, one trick is to look at the practices of the law reviews that edit The Bluebook ( Columbia Law Review , Harvard Law Review , University of Pennsylvania Law Review , and Yale Law Journal ) as well as the past practices of your law journal to see how they have cited your source in previously published articles. Of course, the editors of these law journals may have been incorrect in their decision on how to properly cite the source, but it is still often helpful to see how other editors have interpreted the rules.

To easily search the content of other law journals for your source, you may wish to create a group of peer journals to search in HeinOnline, Lexis, or Westlaw. For example, on Westlaw:

1. After logging in, search for Harvard Law Review in the universal search bar at the top of the page; as you type, the journal name will autopopulate as a suggestion and you can click on it.

2. Once on the Harvard Law Review page, look under the journal name for the star icon; click "Add to Favorites."

Screenshot from Westlaw showing the Add to Favorites button under a law journal title

3. In the popup, click the "Create New Group" button and type in the new Group Name "Peer Journals," then Save. You'll be returned to the Add to Favorites box where you can check the box for Peer Journals and click Save to add Harvard Law Review.  

Screenshot from Westlaw of Create New Group button

4. Repeat the process for the Yale Law Journal , the University of Pennsylvania Law Review , and the Columbia Law Review , as well as your own law journal.

5. Return to the Westlaw home page and scroll down to the second box where you will see a tab for "Favorites." You should see the journals listed under "Peer Journals" in the "Favorites" section. You can now easily search the content within these specific law journals.

Screenshot of Westlaw Favorites box

7. After finding an article that cites your source or a source similar to it in a law journal through Westlaw, you can check to see how the citation looks in the final, published version by looking at a copy of the article in the HeinOnline Law Journal Library .

Webpages are frequently modified or taken down which is problematic when it comes to online sources, as URLs in citations can turn into dead links/404 errors before the article is even published. Perma.cc helps resolve this "link rot" problem. Perma.cc allows users to make archival copies of webpages and store them, creating a reliable URL. Future readers will always be able to see what a webpage looked like when the Perma link was created, even if the original webpage subsequently changes or disappears. Perma.cc allows authors and student editors to feel more confident relying on electronic sources in citations.

Check out the  Perma.cc guide  for more complete information, but at a glance: 

To create a Perma link:

  • Log in to your Perma.cc  account. (If you don't have one, ask your editor to email Heather Joy at [email protected].)
  • Copy and paste the URL of the page you wish to preserve into the perma.cc box, and then select the correct folder ( e.g. , your journal's folder). Click the blue "Create Perma Link" button.
  • After a few seconds, you will see your Perma.cc record. Copy the new Perma link URL (shown in blue near the top of the screen) into the citation by placing it in brackets following the URL, pursuant to Bluebook Rule 18.2.1(d). New Perma links become permanent after 24 hours.

Occasionally, Perma links will be marked as private records. This frequently happens with resources that are behind a paywall, such as articles from the New York Times . Only the creator of the link and the organization that controls the Perma.cc account will be able to see the content at the Perma link, but you should still create Perma links for these sources to archive those webpages. If necessary you can also create Perma links for PDFs. 

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Bluebook Citation: Law Reviews/Articles & Other Non-Book Publications

  • Common Building Block Rules
  • Bluepages v. Whitepages
  • Regulations & Adminstrative Opinions
  • Law Reviews/Articles & Other Non-Book Publications
  • Tables & Bluepages Tables
  • Electronic Resources
  • International Materials
  • Foreign Materials

Authors - Rule 15.1 & 16.2

Follow same rules as for books - Rule 15.1 . The only difference is to use normal type (as versus large and small capitals).

In essence, use the authors name as found on the document (and not in reverse, i.e. its first then second name, not last, then first):

  • Decimus Junius Brutus.

When there are two authors, use an ampersand: 

  • Marcus Aemilius Lepidus & Marcus Antonius Creticus.

When there are three or more, use the first followed by et al: 

  • Gaius Cassius Longinus, et al

Follow the same rules for institutional authors (all Rule 15.1) .

Article and Journal Titles - Tables 13-16

Use the article title as it appears - do not use abbreviations (like in case names). Capitalize according to Rule 8 .

To abbreviate English language periodical titles use tables T13.1, T13.2 and T10 . Omit the words "a," "at," "of," and "the." If the title only consists of one word after the words "a," "at," "of," or "the," do not abbreviate the remaining word (See Table 13).

Examples - Rule 16 & Tables 13-16

James R. Hackney, “Law and Neoclassical Economics: Science, Politics and the Reconfiguration of American Tort Law Theory,” 15  Law and History Review  275, 1997, at page 280.

James R. Hackney, Law and Neoclassical Economics: Science, Politics and the Reconfiguration of American Tort Law Theory , 15  Law and Hist. Rev. 275, 280 (1997).

Author; article title; volume; law review title; page number; pinpoint cite; year

Note: In court documents (bluepages), the article title is underlined. In law reviews, the journal name is in small-caps and the article title is italicized.

For short forms, see Rule 16.9.

Newspapers & Other Non-Conseutively Paginated Materials - Rule 16.6

Generally the same as normal articles. However, as there is no consecutive pagination within a newspaper, you have to specify a location differently (Rule 16.6) .

e.g. Al Baker, Indicting DNA Profiles Is Vital in Old Rape Cases , N.Y. Times , Oct. 18, 2009, at A20,

Note: abbreviations for newspaper extract from the Tables, as with the date abbreviation. Remember for law reviews to use large and small capitals for the newspaper.

These rules also apply to other non-consecutively paginated materials. What does that mean? For example, a collection of magazines bound together in one volume. Between the magazines there is no continuity of pagination. Hence, like newspapers, you have to specify location differently, usually with a specific date (Rules 16.6 - 16.6) .

Subject Guide

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Other Types

Other type of documents include:

  • Student written law review materials  (Rule 16.7.1)
  • Student written book reviews (Rule 16.7.2)
  • Symposia (Rule 16.7.3)
  • Annotations, i.e. ALRs (Rule 16.7.6)
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How to Cite a Law in Harvard Style?

Published by Alaxendra Bets at August 30th, 2021 , Revised On August 23, 2023

In academic texts, laws might be cited. The term ‘law’ is an umbrella term, which is used to mean either one of the following:

  • Legal cases: Legal cases are mostly included in the reference list, but only if they are highly important for the overall understanding of the text or what the text is claiming. In other words, to support a claim or suggestion made in the text, writers can include such references in the list; if they feel the text just can’t do without.

Note: The name of the case it written in italics. Its year of publication is written in brackets. However, some institutions prefer to italicise both the title and year of the case.

  • Legislation acts and regulations: A lot of care must be taken while citing and referencing such official sources. Their names, capitalization and/or spellings are not changed to suit the referencing page layout or style etc. Everything must be cited and referenced in the way it was officially published.

Tip: While citing such sources, don’t forget to check the formal title of the act. Most legislative acts and regulations have a formal title that can be used in the in-text citation.

Jurisdiction: They also fall under the above category of legislation acts and regulations. While citing jurisdictions, it should be cited in such a way that the reader can instantly tell whether it is a jurisdiction act. For example, ‘Victoria’s Equal opportunity Act 1995 prohibits…’

Another method is to write the abbreviated information within brackets after the date, for example: ‘the Copyright Act 1968 (Cth) … ‘Here, Cth refers to Commonwealth Acts. These are a collection of acts that are specific to Australia. Referencing them is done using Harvard style, too.

Units of division for Legal Acts: Just like books have chapters, acts have divisions too. They are in the form of sections, and they are numbered in Roman numerals. Citing and referencing legal acts involves mentioning the section number too. The abbreviations s. or ss. are used to refer to acts’ sections. However, they are never written at the beginning of a sentence. In Harvard, a section of a legal act is referenced in these ways, for instance:

  • Section 4 of the Commonwealth’s Copyright Act 1968 … OR
  • In ss. 4-7 of the Copyright Act (Cth) … OR
  • The Copyright Act 1068, s. 4, …

Legal Bills: Governments and their officials often pass and publish many bills related to different departments. In Harvard, legal bills and acts are cited and referenced in much the same way, as the examples and formats below will show

Just like citing a journal article includes some unique elements, like the issue and volume numbers of the journal, laws also include such unique details. They are in the form of numbers corresponding to acts, their sections or both.

The basic format for citing any law in Harvard style is:

In-text citation: Title of the law in italics Year of Publication

Reference list entry: Title of the law in italics Year of Publication (Jurisdiction abbreviation)

For example:

In-text citation: …The Commonwealth’s Copyright Act 1968

Reference list entry: The Commonwealth’s Copyright Act 1968 (Vic)

In-text and Reference Formats with Examples

In Harvard referencing, the basic format for legal cases is:

In-text citation: Title of the case (Year) Reference details (including vol number, abbreviated reference series, starting p.#)

Reference list entry: References for legal case in Harvard style are only included if they are necessary to understand the general meaning(s) of implication(s) of the text(s). Otherwise, they are not needed. If they are indeed to be included, a separate sub-heading titled ‘Cases’ is made within the reference list, and the references for legal cases are written underneath it.

Note: During in-text citation in Harvard style for legal cases, the word ‘at’ is used instead of p.# for a page number. The Harvard in-text citation format in such a case is: Title of the case (Year) reference details at the page number.

An example of a legal case cited and referenced in Harvard style is:

In-text citation: The State of New South Wales v. The Commonwealth (1915) 20 CLR 54 Greutner v. Everard (1960) 103 CLR 177 at 181

Reference list entry: The State of New South Wales v. The Commonwealth (1915) 20 CLR 54

Legislations: Acts and Regulations

In-text citation: Tile of the Act in italics, Year of publication (may or may not be in italics), section number (if available)

Reference list entry: Title of the Act in italics, Year of Publication (may or may not be in italics), section number, reprint number, Publisher, Place of Publication.

In-text citation: Property Law Act 1974 (Qld), s 55

Reference list entry: Property law Act 1974 (Qld), 2014, Office of Queensland Parliamentary Counsel,

Queensland.

Some places also use the following Harvard format for referring to legal acts and legislations:

In-text citation: Title of the Act Year both in italics OR title of the Act Year both in italics (abbreviation of the jurisdiction)

Reference list entry: Title of the Act Year of publication (abbreviation of the jurisdiction)

In-text citation: Residential Tenancies Act 1997 OR Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (Vic) where Vic, short for Victoria, is the abbreviation for jurisdiction. As mentioned above, make the jurisdiction obvious. It can also be done in this way: ‘‘Victoria’s Residential Tenancies Act 1997 …’

Reference list entry: Residential Tenancies Act 1997 (Vic)

Legal Bills

Citing and referencing legal bills in Harvard style is perhaps the simplest out of all three law types. The format for citing such a source in Harvard is:

In-text citation: Title of the Bill Year (Jurisdiction) NO ITALICISATION in any of the elements while citing a legal bill.

Reference list entry: Title of the Bill (Title of the Regulation or Act if available) Bill Publication Year (abbreviation for jurisdiction if available).

Note: Since a bill before parliament is ‘unpublished,’ its title is NOT italicized in an in-text nor reference citation.

In-text citation: Migration Amendment (Regulation of Migration Agents) Bill 2017 (Cth)

Reference list entry: Migration Amendment (Regulation of Migration Agents) Bill 2017 (Cth)

Other Types of Laws and Their Citations with Examples

Here are some other not-so-common types of laws that might need to be cited according to Harvard style:

1.    Citing Laws not included in the Code

Here, the ‘code’ refers to the act or a section of an act. It’s cited in the same an act is cited, as mentioned above, for example: ( Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act 2009 ). The year of publication may or not be italicised, depending on which format is specified by one’s institution.

Note: Italics are not used for Acts of Parliament of other nations, e.g., Youth Work Act 2010 (Estonia).

2.    Citing Laws spread across different sections of the same Act

They’re cited in the same format as that given above for acts, for example: ( Civil Rights Act 1964 )

Note Mention section(s) number here also, if applicable, after year and jurisdiction abbreviation (if known).

3.    Citing state laws

The format for these, too, is the same as that given above for acts, for example: ( Community Action Act 2020 ).

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Frequently Asked Questions

To cite a law in Harvard Style:

  • Include the law’s title.
  • Year of enactment.
  • Jurisdiction (if applicable).
  • Section or regulation number.
  • Italicize or underline the law’s title.
  • Parenthetical citation in-text: (Title Year).
  • Full details in the reference list.

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Referencing the dissertation is not a problem when you follow our super easy guide. Firstly you need to collect some common information

Protocols to cite a book in Harvard style: Author Surname, Author Initial. (Year Published). Title. ed. City: Publisher, p.Pages Used.

Harvard referencing style follows the author-date system of in-text citation. It’s essential to mention page numbers of the book’s information you’ve used.

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Purdue Online Writing Lab Purdue OWL® College of Liberal Arts

In-Text Citations: The Basics

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Welcome to the Purdue OWL

This page is brought to you by the OWL at Purdue University. When printing this page, you must include the entire legal notice.

Copyright ©1995-2018 by The Writing Lab & The OWL at Purdue and Purdue University. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, reproduced, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our terms and conditions of fair use.

Note:  This page reflects the latest version of the APA Publication Manual (i.e., APA 7), which released in October 2019. The equivalent resource for the older APA 6 style  can be found here .

Reference citations in text are covered on pages 261-268 of the Publication Manual. What follows are some general guidelines for referring to the works of others in your essay.

Note:  On pages 117-118, the Publication Manual suggests that authors of research papers should use the past tense or present perfect tense for signal phrases that occur in the literature review and procedure descriptions (for example, Jones (1998)  found  or Jones (1998)  has found ...). Contexts other than traditionally-structured research writing may permit the simple present tense (for example, Jones (1998)  finds ).

APA Citation Basics

When using APA format, follow the author-date method of in-text citation. This means that the author's last name and the year of publication for the source should appear in the text, like, for example, (Jones, 1998). One complete reference for each source should appear in the reference list at the end of the paper.

If you are referring to an idea from another work but  NOT  directly quoting the material, or making reference to an entire book, article or other work, you only have to make reference to the author and year of publication and not the page number in your in-text reference.

On the other hand, if you are directly quoting or borrowing from another work, you should include the page number at the end of the parenthetical citation. Use the abbreviation “p.” (for one page) or “pp.” (for multiple pages) before listing the page number(s). Use an en dash for page ranges. For example, you might write (Jones, 1998, p. 199) or (Jones, 1998, pp. 199–201). This information is reiterated below.

Regardless of how they are referenced, all sources that are cited in the text must appear in the reference list at the end of the paper.

In-text citation capitalization, quotes, and italics/underlining

  • Always capitalize proper nouns, including author names and initials: D. Jones.
  • If you refer to the title of a source within your paper, capitalize all words that are four letters long or greater within the title of a source:  Permanence and Change . Exceptions apply to short words that are verbs, nouns, pronouns, adjectives, and adverbs:  Writing New Media ,  There Is Nothing Left to Lose .

( Note:  in your References list, only the first word of a title will be capitalized:  Writing new media .)

  • When capitalizing titles, capitalize both words in a hyphenated compound word:  Natural-Born Cyborgs .
  • Capitalize the first word after a dash or colon: "Defining Film Rhetoric: The Case of Hitchcock's  Vertigo ."
  • If the title of the work is italicized in your reference list, italicize it and use title case capitalization in the text:  The Closing of the American Mind ;  The Wizard of Oz ;  Friends .
  • If the title of the work is not italicized in your reference list, use double quotation marks and title case capitalization (even though the reference list uses sentence case): "Multimedia Narration: Constructing Possible Worlds;" "The One Where Chandler Can't Cry."

Short quotations

If you are directly quoting from a work, you will need to include the author, year of publication, and page number for the reference (preceded by "p." for a single page and “pp.” for a span of multiple pages, with the page numbers separated by an en dash).

You can introduce the quotation with a signal phrase that includes the author's last name followed by the date of publication in parentheses.

If you do not include the author’s name in the text of the sentence, place the author's last name, the year of publication, and the page number in parentheses after the quotation.

Long quotations

Place direct quotations that are 40 words or longer in a free-standing block of typewritten lines and omit quotation marks. Start the quotation on a new line, indented 1/2 inch from the left margin, i.e., in the same place you would begin a new paragraph. Type the entire quotation on the new margin, and indent the first line of any subsequent paragraph within the quotation 1/2 inch from the new margin. Maintain double-spacing throughout, but do not add an extra blank line before or after it. The parenthetical citation should come after the closing punctuation mark.

Because block quotation formatting is difficult for us to replicate in the OWL's content management system, we have simply provided a screenshot of a generic example below.

This image shows how to format a long quotation in an APA seventh edition paper.

Formatting example for block quotations in APA 7 style.

Quotations from sources without pages

Direct quotations from sources that do not contain pages should not reference a page number. Instead, you may reference another logical identifying element: a paragraph, a chapter number, a section number, a table number, or something else. Older works (like religious texts) can also incorporate special location identifiers like verse numbers. In short: pick a substitute for page numbers that makes sense for your source.

Summary or paraphrase

If you are paraphrasing an idea from another work, you only have to make reference to the author and year of publication in your in-text reference and may omit the page numbers. APA guidelines, however, do encourage including a page range for a summary or paraphrase when it will help the reader find the information in a longer work. 

how to cite an article law

How Tech Giants Cut Corners to Harvest Data for A.I.

OpenAI, Google and Meta ignored corporate policies, altered their own rules and discussed skirting copyright law as they sought online information to train their newest artificial intelligence systems.

Researchers at OpenAI’s office in San Francisco developed a tool to transcribe YouTube videos to amass conversational text for A.I. development. Credit... Jason Henry for The New York Times

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Cade Metz

By Cade Metz ,  Cecilia Kang ,  Sheera Frenkel ,  Stuart A. Thompson and Nico Grant

Reporting from San Francisco, Washington and New York

  • Published April 6, 2024 Updated April 8, 2024

In late 2021, OpenAI faced a supply problem.

The artificial intelligence lab had exhausted every reservoir of reputable English-language text on the internet as it developed its latest A.I. system. It needed more data to train the next version of its technology — lots more.

Listen to this article with reporter commentary

Open this article in the New York Times Audio app on iOS.

So OpenAI researchers created a speech recognition tool called Whisper. It could transcribe the audio from YouTube videos, yielding new conversational text that would make an A.I. system smarter.

Some OpenAI employees discussed how such a move might go against YouTube’s rules, three people with knowledge of the conversations said. YouTube, which is owned by Google, prohibits use of its videos for applications that are “independent” of the video platform.

Ultimately, an OpenAI team transcribed more than one million hours of YouTube videos, the people said. The team included Greg Brockman, OpenAI’s president, who personally helped collect the videos, two of the people said. The texts were then fed into a system called GPT-4 , which was widely considered one of the world’s most powerful A.I. models and was the basis of the latest version of the ChatGPT chatbot.

The race to lead A.I. has become a desperate hunt for the digital data needed to advance the technology. To obtain that data, tech companies including OpenAI, Google and Meta have cut corners, ignored corporate policies and debated bending the law, according to an examination by The New York Times.

At Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram, managers, lawyers and engineers last year discussed buying the publishing house Simon & Schuster to procure long works, according to recordings of internal meetings obtained by The Times. They also conferred on gathering copyrighted data from across the internet, even if that meant facing lawsuits. Negotiating licenses with publishers, artists, musicians and the news industry would take too long, they said.

Like OpenAI, Google transcribed YouTube videos to harvest text for its A.I. models, five people with knowledge of the company’s practices said. That potentially violated the copyrights to the videos, which belong to their creators.

Last year, Google also broadened its terms of service. One motivation for the change, according to members of the company’s privacy team and an internal message viewed by The Times, was to allow Google to be able to tap publicly available Google Docs, restaurant reviews on Google Maps and other online material for more of its A.I. products.

The companies’ actions illustrate how online information — news stories, fictional works, message board posts, Wikipedia articles, computer programs, photos, podcasts and movie clips — has increasingly become the lifeblood of the booming A.I. industry. Creating innovative systems depends on having enough data to teach the technologies to instantly produce text, images, sounds and videos that resemble what a human creates.

The volume of data is crucial. Leading chatbot systems have learned from pools of digital text spanning as many as three trillion words, or roughly twice the number of words stored in Oxford University’s Bodleian Library, which has collected manuscripts since 1602. The most prized data, A.I. researchers said, is high-quality information, such as published books and articles, which have been carefully written and edited by professionals.

For years, the internet — with sites like Wikipedia and Reddit — was a seemingly endless source of data. But as A.I. advanced, tech companies sought more repositories. Google and Meta, which have billions of users who produce search queries and social media posts every day, were largely limited by privacy laws and their own policies from drawing on much of that content for A.I.

Their situation is urgent. Tech companies could run through the high-quality data on the internet as soon as 2026, according to Epoch, a research institute. The companies are using the data faster than it is being produced.

“The only practical way for these tools to exist is if they can be trained on massive amounts of data without having to license that data,” Sy Damle, a lawyer who represents Andreessen Horowitz, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm, said of A.I. models last year in a public discussion about copyright law. “The data needed is so massive that even collective licensing really can’t work.”

Tech companies are so hungry for new data that some are developing “synthetic” information. This is not organic data created by humans, but text, images and code that A.I. models produce — in other words, the systems learn from what they themselves generate.

OpenAI said each of its A.I. models “has a unique data set that we curate to help their understanding of the world and remain globally competitive in research.” Google said that its A.I. models “are trained on some YouTube content,” which was allowed under agreements with YouTube creators, and that the company did not use data from office apps outside of an experimental program. Meta said it had “made aggressive investments” to integrate A.I. into its services and had billions of publicly shared images and videos from Instagram and Facebook for training its models.

For creators, the growing use of their works by A.I. companies has prompted lawsuits over copyright and licensing. The Times sued OpenAI and Microsoft last year for using copyrighted news articles without permission to train A.I. chatbots. OpenAI and Microsoft have said using the articles was “fair use,” or allowed under copyright law, because they transformed the works for a different purpose.

More than 10,000 trade groups, authors, companies and others submitted comments last year about the use of creative works by A.I. models to the Copyright Office , a federal agency that is preparing guidance on how copyright law applies in the A.I. era.

Justine Bateman, a filmmaker, former actress and author of two books, told the Copyright Office that A.I. models were taking content — including her writing and films — without permission or payment.

“This is the largest theft in the United States, period,” she said in an interview.

‘Scale Is All You Need’

how to cite an article law

In January 2020, Jared Kaplan, a theoretical physicist at Johns Hopkins University, published a groundbreaking paper on A.I. that stoked the appetite for online data.

His conclusion was unequivocal: The more data there was to train a large language model — the technology that drives online chatbots — the better it would perform. Just as a student learns more by reading more books, large language models can better pinpoint patterns in text and be more accurate with more information.

“Everyone was very surprised that these trends — these scaling laws as we call them — were basically as precise as what you see in astronomy or physics,” said Dr. Kaplan, who published the paper with nine OpenAI researchers. (He now works at the A.I. start-up Anthropic.)

“Scale is all you need” soon became a rallying cry for A.I.

Researchers have long used large public databases of digital information to develop A.I., including Wikipedia and Common Crawl, a database of more than 250 billion web pages collected since 2007. Researchers often “cleaned” the data by removing hate speech and other unwanted text before using it to train A.I. models.

In 2020, data sets were tiny by today’s standards. One database containing 30,000 photographs from the photo website Flickr was considered a vital resource at the time.

After Dr. Kaplan’s paper, that amount of data was no longer enough. It became all about “just making things really big,” said Brandon Duderstadt, the chief executive of Nomic, an A.I. company in New York.

Before 2020, most A.I. models used relatively little training data.

Mr. Kaplan’s paper, released in 2020, led to a new era defined by GPT-3, a large language model, where researchers began including more data in their models …

… much, much more data.

When OpenAI unveiled GPT-3 in November 2020, it was trained on the largest amount of data to date — about 300 billion “tokens,” which are essentially words or pieces of words. After learning from that data, the system generated text with astounding accuracy, writing blog posts, poetry and its own computer programs.

In 2022, DeepMind, an A.I. lab owned by Google, went further. It tested 400 A.I. models and varied the amount of training data and other factors. The top-performing models used even more data than Dr. Kaplan had predicted in his paper. One model, Chinchilla, was trained on 1.4 trillion tokens.

It was soon overtaken. Last year, researchers from China released an A.I. model, Skywork , which was trained on 3.2 trillion tokens from English and Chinese texts. Google also unveiled an A.I. system, PaLM 2 , which topped 3.6 trillion tokens .

Transcribing YouTube

In May, Sam Altman , the chief executive of OpenAI, acknowledged that A.I. companies would use up all viable data on the internet.

“That will run out,” he said in a speech at a tech conference.

Mr. Altman had seen the phenomenon up close. At OpenAI, researchers had gathered data for years, cleaned it and fed it into a vast pool of text to train the company’s language models. They had mined the computer code repository GitHub, vacuumed up databases of chess moves and drawn on data describing high school tests and homework assignments from the website Quizlet.

By late 2021, those supplies were depleted, said eight people with knowledge of the company, who were not authorized to speak publicly.

OpenAI was desperate for more data to develop its next-generation A.I. model, GPT-4. So employees discussed transcribing podcasts, audiobooks and YouTube videos, the people said. They talked about creating data from scratch with A.I. systems. They also considered buying start-ups that had collected large amounts of digital data.

OpenAI eventually made Whisper, the speech recognition tool, to transcribe YouTube videos and podcasts, six people said. But YouTube prohibits people from not only using its videos for “independent” applications, but also accessing its videos by “any automated means (such as robots, botnets or scrapers).”

OpenAI employees knew they were wading into a legal gray area, the people said, but believed that training A.I. with the videos was fair use. Mr. Brockman, OpenAI’s president, was listed in a research paper as a creator of Whisper. He personally helped gather YouTube videos and fed them into the technology, two people said.

Mr. Brockman referred requests for comment to OpenAI, which said it uses “numerous sources” of data.

Last year, OpenAI released GPT-4, which drew on the more than one million hours of YouTube videos that Whisper had transcribed. Mr. Brockman led the team that developed GPT-4.

Some Google employees were aware that OpenAI had harvested YouTube videos for data, two people with knowledge of the companies said. But they didn’t stop OpenAI because Google had also used transcripts of YouTube videos to train its A.I. models, the people said. That practice may have violated the copyrights of YouTube creators. So if Google made a fuss about OpenAI, there might be a public outcry against its own methods, the people said.

Matt Bryant, a Google spokesman, said the company had no knowledge of OpenAI’s practices and prohibited “unauthorized scraping or downloading of YouTube content.” Google takes action when it has a clear legal or technical basis to do so, he said.

Google’s rules allowed it to tap YouTube user data to develop new features for the video platform. But it was unclear whether Google could use YouTube data to build a commercial service beyond the video platform, such as a chatbot.

Geoffrey Lottenberg, an intellectual property lawyer with the law firm Berger Singerman, said Google’s language about what it could and could not do with YouTube video transcripts was vague.

“Whether the data could be used for a new commercial service is open to interpretation and could be litigated,” he said.

In late 2022, after OpenAI released ChatGPT and set off an industrywide race to catch up , Google researchers and engineers discussed tapping other user data. Billions of words sat in people’s Google Docs and other free Google apps. But the company’s privacy restrictions limited how they could use the data, three people with knowledge of Google’s practices said.

In June, Google’s legal department asked the privacy team to draft language to broaden what the company could use consumer data for, according to two members of the privacy team and an internal message viewed by The Times.

The employees were told Google wanted to use people’s publicly available content in Google Docs, Google Sheets and related apps for an array of A.I. products. The employees said they didn’t know if the company had previously trained A.I. on such data.

At the time, Google’s privacy policy said the company could use publicly available information only to “help train Google’s language models and build features like Google Translate.”

The privacy team wrote new terms so Google could tap the data for its “A.I. models and build products and features like Google Translate, Bard and Cloud AI capabilities,” which was a wider collection of A.I. technologies.

“What is the end goal here?” one member of the privacy team asked in an internal message. “How broad are we going?”

The team was told specifically to release the new terms on the Fourth of July weekend, when people were typically focused on the holiday, the employees said. The revised policy debuted on July 1, at the start of the long weekend.

How Google Can Use Your Data

Here are the changes Google made to its privacy policy last year for its free consumer apps.

how to cite an article law

Google uses information to improve our services and to develop new products, features and technologies that benefit our users and the public. For example, we use publicly available information to help train Google’s language AI models and build products and features like Google Translate , Bard, and Cloud AI capabilities .

how to cite an article law

In August, two privacy team members said, they pressed managers on whether Google could start using data from free consumer versions of Google Docs, Google Sheets and Google Slides. They were not given clear answers, they said.

Mr. Bryant said that the privacy policy changes had been made for clarity and that Google did not use information from Google Docs or related apps to train language models “without explicit permission” from users, referring to a voluntary program that allows users to test experimental features.

“We did not start training on additional types of data based on this language change,” he said.

The Debate at Meta

Mark Zuckerberg, Meta’s chief executive, had invested in A.I. for years — but suddenly found himself behind when OpenAI released ChatGPT in 2022. He immediately pushed to match and exceed ChatGPT , calling executives and engineers at all hours of the night to push them to develop a rival chatbot, said three current and former employees, who were not authorized to discuss confidential conversations.

But by early last year, Meta had hit the same hurdle as its rivals: not enough data.

Ahmad Al-Dahle, Meta’s vice president of generative A.I., told executives that his team had used almost every available English-language book, essay, poem and news article on the internet to develop a model, according to recordings of internal meetings, which were shared by an employee.

Meta could not match ChatGPT unless it got more data, Mr. Al-Dahle told colleagues. In March and April 2023, some of the company’s business development leaders, engineers and lawyers met nearly daily to tackle the problem.

Some debated paying $10 a book for the full licensing rights to new titles. They discussed buying Simon & Schuster, which publishes authors like Stephen King, according to the recordings.

They also talked about how they had summarized books, essays and other works from the internet without permission and discussed sucking up more, even if that meant facing lawsuits. One lawyer warned of “ethical” concerns around taking intellectual property from artists but was met with silence, according to the recordings.

Mr. Zuckerberg demanded a solution, employees said.

“The capability that Mark is looking for in the product is just something that we currently aren’t able to deliver,” one engineer said.

While Meta operates giant social networks, it didn’t have troves of user posts at its disposal, two employees said. Many Facebook users had deleted their earlier posts, and the platform wasn’t where people wrote essay-type content, they said.

Meta was also limited by privacy changes it introduced after a 2018 scandal over sharing its users’ data with Cambridge Analytica, a voter-profiling company.

Mr. Zuckerberg said in a recent investor call that the billions of publicly shared videos and photos on Facebook and Instagram are “greater than the Common Crawl data set.”

During their recorded discussions, Meta executives talked about how they had hired contractors in Africa to aggregate summaries of fiction and nonfiction. The summaries included copyrighted content “because we have no way of not collecting that,” a manager said in one meeting.

Meta’s executives said OpenAI seemed to have used copyrighted material without permission. It would take Meta too long to negotiate licenses with publishers, artists, musicians and the news industry, they said, according to the recordings.

“The only thing that’s holding us back from being as good as ChatGPT is literally just data volume,” Nick Grudin, a vice president of global partnership and content, said in one meeting.

OpenAI appeared to be taking copyrighted material and Meta could follow this “market precedent,” he added.

Meta’s executives agreed to lean on a 2015 court decision involving the Authors Guild versus Google , according to the recordings. In that case, Google was permitted to scan, digitize and catalog books in an online database after arguing that it had reproduced only snippets of the works online and had transformed the originals, which made it fair use.

Using data to train A.I. systems, Meta’s lawyers said in their meetings, should similarly be fair use.

At least two employees raised concerns about using intellectual property and not paying authors and other artists fairly or at all, according to the recordings. One employee recounted a separate discussion about copyrighted data with senior executives including Chris Cox, Meta’s chief product officer, and said no one in that meeting considered the ethics of using people’s creative works.

‘Synthetic’ Data

OpenAI’s Mr. Altman had a plan to deal with the looming data shortage.

Companies like his, he said at the May conference, would eventually train their A.I. on text generated by A.I. — otherwise known as synthetic data.

Since an A.I. model can produce humanlike text, Mr. Altman and others have argued, the systems can create additional data to develop better versions of themselves. This would help developers build increasingly powerful technology and reduce their dependence on copyrighted data.

“As long as you can get over the synthetic data event horizon, where the model is smart enough to make good synthetic data, everything will be fine,” Mr. Altman said.

A.I. researchers have explored synthetic data for years. But building an A.I system that can train itself is easier said than done. A.I. models that learn from their own outputs can get caught in a loop where they reinforce their own quirks, mistakes and limitations.

“The data these systems need is like a path through the jungle,” said Jeff Clune, a former OpenAI researcher who now teaches computer science at the University of British Columbia. “If they only train on synthetic data, they can get lost in the jungle.”

To combat this, OpenAI and others are investigating how two different A.I. models might work together to generate synthetic data that is more useful and reliable. One system produces the data, while a second judges the information to separate the good from the bad. Researchers are divided on whether this method will work.

A.I. executives are barreling ahead nonetheless.

“It should be all right,” Mr. Altman said at the conference.

Read by Cade Metz

Audio produced by Patricia Sulbarán .

An earlier version of this article misstated the publisher of J.K. Rowling’s books. Her works have been published by Scholastic, Little, Brown and others. They were not published by Simon & Schuster.

How we handle corrections

Cade Metz writes about artificial intelligence, driverless cars, robotics, virtual reality and other emerging areas of technology. More about Cade Metz

Cecilia Kang reports on technology and regulatory policy and is based in Washington D.C. She has written about technology for over two decades. More about Cecilia Kang

Sheera Frenkel is a reporter based in the San Francisco Bay Area, covering the ways technology impacts everyday lives with a focus on social media companies, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, YouTube, Telegram and WhatsApp. More about Sheera Frenkel

Stuart A. Thompson writes about how false and misleading information spreads online and how it affects people around the world. He focuses on misinformation, disinformation and other misleading content. More about Stuart A. Thompson

Nico Grant is a technology reporter covering Google from San Francisco. Previously, he spent five years at Bloomberg News, where he focused on Google and cloud computing. More about Nico Grant

Explore Our Coverage of Artificial Intelligence

News  and Analysis

U.S. clinics are starting to offer patients a new service: having their mammograms read not just by a radiologist, but also by an A.I. model .

OpenAI unveiled Voice Engine , an A.I. technology that can recreate a person’s voice from a 15-second recording.

Amazon said it had added $2.75 billion to its investment in Anthropic , an A.I. start-up that competes with companies like OpenAI and Google.

The Age of A.I.

A.I. is peering into restaurant garbage pails  and crunching grocery-store data to try to figure out how to send less uneaten food into dumpsters.

David Autor, an M.I.T. economist and tech skeptic, argues that A.I. is fundamentally different  from past waves of computerization.

Economists doubt that A.I. is already visible in productivity data . Big companies, however, talk often about adopting it to improve efficiency.

The Caribbean island Anguilla made $32 million last year, more than 10& of its G.D.P., from companies registering web addresses that end in .ai .

When it comes to the A.I. that powers chatbots, China trails the United States. But when it comes to producing the scientists behind a new generation of humanoid technologies, China is pulling ahead .

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  • Citing sources

How to Cite Sources | Citation Generator & Quick Guide

Citing your sources is essential in  academic writing . Whenever you quote or paraphrase a source (such as a book, article, or webpage), you have to include a  citation crediting the original author.

Failing to properly cite your sources counts as plagiarism , since you’re presenting someone else’s ideas as if they were your own.

The most commonly used citation styles are APA and MLA. The free Scribbr Citation Generator is the quickest way to cite sources in these styles. Simply enter the URL, DOI, or title, and we’ll generate an accurate, correctly formatted citation.

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Table of contents

When do you need to cite sources, which citation style should you use, in-text citations, reference lists and bibliographies.

Scribbr Citation Generator

Other useful citation tools

Citation examples and full guides, frequently asked questions about citing sources.

Citations are required in all types of academic texts. They are needed for several reasons:

  • To avoid plagiarism by indicating when you’re taking information from another source
  • To give proper credit to the author of that source
  • To allow the reader to consult your sources for themselves

A citation is needed whenever you integrate a source into your writing. This usually means quoting or paraphrasing:

  • To quote a source , copy a short piece of text word for word and put it inside quotation marks .
  • To paraphrase a source , put the text into your own words. It’s important that the paraphrase is not too close to the original wording. You can use the paraphrasing tool if you don’t want to do this manually.

Citations are needed whether you quote or paraphrase, and whatever type of source you use. As well as citing scholarly sources like books and journal articles, don’t forget to include citations for any other sources you use for ideas, examples, or evidence. That includes websites, YouTube videos , and lectures .

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The AI-powered Citation Checker helps you avoid common mistakes such as:

  • Missing commas and periods
  • Incorrect usage of “et al.”
  • Ampersands (&) in narrative citations
  • Missing reference entries

how to cite an article law

Usually, your institution (or the journal you’re submitting to) will require you to follow a specific citation style, so check your guidelines or ask your instructor.

In some cases, you may have to choose a citation style for yourself. Make sure to pick one style and use it consistently:

  • APA Style is widely used in the social sciences and beyond.
  • MLA style is common in the humanities.
  • Chicago notes and bibliography , common in the humanities
  • Chicago author-date , used in the (social) sciences
  • There are many other citation styles for different disciplines.

If in doubt, check with your instructor or read other papers from your field of study to see what style they follow.

In most styles, your citations consist of:

  • Brief in-text citations at the relevant points in the text
  • A reference list or bibliography containing full information on all the sources you’ve cited

In-text citations most commonly take the form of parenthetical citations featuring the last name of the source’s author and its year of publication (aka author-date citations).

An alternative to this type of in-text citation is the system used in numerical citation styles , where a number is inserted into the text, corresponding to an entry in a numbered reference list.

There are also note citation styles , where you place your citations in either footnotes or endnotes . Since they’re not embedded in the text itself, these citations can provide more detail and sometimes aren’t accompanied by a full reference list or bibliography.

A reference list (aka “Bibliography” or “Works Cited,” depending on the style) is where you provide full information on each of the sources you’ve cited in the text. It appears at the end of your paper, usually with a hanging indent applied to each entry.

The information included in reference entries is broadly similar, whatever citation style you’re using. For each source, you’ll typically include the:

  • Author name
  • Publication date
  • Container (e.g., the book an essay was published in, the journal an article appeared in)
  • Location (e.g., a URL or DOI , or sometimes a physical location)

The exact information included varies depending on the source type and the citation style. The order in which the information appears, and how you format it (e.g., capitalization, use of italics) also varies.

Most commonly, the entries in your reference list are alphabetized by author name. This allows the reader to easily find the relevant entry based on the author name in your in-text citation.

APA-reference-list

In numerical citation styles, the entries in your reference list are numbered, usually based on the order in which you cite them. The reader finds the right entry based on the number that appears in the text.

Vancouver reference list example

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Because each style has many small differences regarding things like italicization, capitalization , and punctuation , it can be difficult to get every detail right. Using a citation generator can save you a lot of time and effort.

Scribbr offers citation generators for both APA and MLA style. Both are quick, easy to use, and 100% free, with no ads and no registration required.

Just input a URL or DOI or add the source details manually, and the generator will automatically produce an in-text citation and reference entry in the correct format. You can save your reference list as you go and download it when you’re done, and even add annotations for an annotated bibliography .

Once you’ve prepared your citations, you might still be unsure if they’re correct and if you’ve used them appropriately in your text. This is where Scribbr’s other citation tools and services may come in handy:

Plagiarism Checker

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Citation Editing

Plagiarism means passing off someone else’s words or ideas as your own. It’s a serious offense in academia. Universities use plagiarism checking software to scan your paper and identify any similarities to other texts.

When you’re dealing with a lot of sources, it’s easy to make mistakes that could constitute accidental plagiarism. For example, you might forget to add a citation after a quote, or paraphrase a source in a way that’s too close to the original text.

Using a plagiarism checker yourself before you submit your work can help you spot these mistakes before they get you in trouble. Based on the results, you can add any missing citations and rephrase your text where necessary.

Try out the Scribbr Plagiarism Checker for free, or check out our detailed comparison of the best plagiarism checkers available online.

Scribbr Plagiarism Checker

Scribbr’s Citation Checker is a unique AI-powered tool that automatically detects stylistic errors and inconsistencies in your in-text citations. It also suggests a correction for every mistake.

Currently available for APA Style, this is the fastest and easiest way to make sure you’ve formatted your citations correctly. You can try out the tool for free below.

If you need extra help with your reference list, we also offer a more in-depth Citation Editing Service.

Our experts cross-check your in-text citations and reference entries, make sure you’ve included the correct information for each source, and improve the formatting of your reference page.

If you want to handle your citations yourself, Scribbr’s free Knowledge Base provides clear, accurate guidance on every aspect of citation. You can see citation examples for a variety of common source types below:

And you can check out our comprehensive guides to the most popular citation styles:

At college level, you must properly cite your sources in all essays , research papers , and other academic texts (except exams and in-class exercises).

Add a citation whenever you quote , paraphrase , or summarize information or ideas from a source. You should also give full source details in a bibliography or reference list at the end of your text.

The exact format of your citations depends on which citation style you are instructed to use. The most common styles are APA , MLA , and Chicago .

The abbreviation “ et al. ” (Latin for “and others”) is used to shorten citations of sources with multiple authors.

“Et al.” is used in APA in-text citations of sources with 3+ authors, e.g. (Smith et al., 2019). It is not used in APA reference entries .

Use “et al.” for 3+ authors in MLA in-text citations and Works Cited entries.

Use “et al.” for 4+ authors in a Chicago in-text citation , and for 10+ authors in a Chicago bibliography entry.

The Scribbr Citation Generator is developed using the open-source Citation Style Language (CSL) project and Frank Bennett’s citeproc-js . It’s the same technology used by dozens of other popular citation tools, including Mendeley and Zotero.

You can find all the citation styles and locales used in the Scribbr Citation Generator in our publicly accessible repository on Github .

APA format is widely used by professionals, researchers, and students in the social and behavioral sciences, including fields like education, psychology, and business.

Be sure to check the guidelines of your university or the journal you want to be published in to double-check which style you should be using.

MLA Style  is the second most used citation style (after APA ). It is mainly used by students and researchers in humanities fields such as literature, languages, and philosophy.

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  • Parenthetical Citation | APA, MLA & Chicago Examples
  • What Are Endnotes? | Guide with Examples
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Beneath the calm, Hong Kong’s new security law drives deeper, quieter changes

FILE - Visitors look at sunset from a hill in Hong Kong, Friday, March 22, 2024. Two weeks after Hong Kong introduced a new national security law, life in the city appears unchanged. A 2020 law drew thousands of protesters to the streets when it was enacted. Now, that's seen as too risky.(AP Photo/Louise Delmotte, File)

FILE - Visitors look at sunset from a hill in Hong Kong, Friday, March 22, 2024. Two weeks after Hong Kong introduced a new national security law, life in the city appears unchanged. A 2020 law drew thousands of protesters to the streets when it was enacted. Now, that’s seen as too risky.(AP Photo/Louise Delmotte, File)

FILE - Hong Kong’s Chief Executive John Lee Ka-chiu poses for photographs with lawmakers following the passing of the Basic Law Article 23 legislation at the Legislative Council in Hong Kong, Tuesday, March 19, 2024. Two weeks after Hong Kong introduced a new national security law, life in the city appears unchanged. A 2020 law drew thousands of protesters to the streets when it was enacted. Now, that’s seen as too risky. (AP Photo/Louise Delmotte, File)

FILE - A sign reading ‘IDEAS ARE BULLETPROOF’ is seen as visitors browse books on the last day of business of independent bookshop ‘Mount Zero’ in Hong Kong, Sunday, March 31, 2024. Two weeks after Hong Kong introduced a new national security law, life in the city appears unchanged. A 2020 law drew thousands of protesters to the streets when it was enacted. Now, that’s seen as too risky. (AP Photo/Louise Delmotte, File)

FILE - People visit the International Immigration & Property expo in Hong Kong, Saturday, March 23, 2024. Two weeks after Hong Kong introduced a new national security law, life in the city appears unchanged. A 2020 law drew thousands of protesters to the streets when it was enacted. Now, that’s seen as too risky. (AP Photo/Louise Delmotte, File)

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HONG KONG (AP) — On the surface, life in Hong Kong after a broad new national security law recently took effect appears unchanged.

A 2020 security law drew thousands of protesters to the streets when it was enacted. Now, that’s seen as too risky. This time, no arrests made headlines. There were no newsroom raids.

Instead, there’s a deeper, quieter wave of adaptation underway among Hong Kong residents who are living under the threat of more extensive restrictions after the Safeguarding National Security Ordinance took effect on March 23.

At an immigration expo during the law’s first two days, immigration consultant Ben Li’s booth was constantly busy, its small white tables all occupied. Inquiries about moving abroad jumped about 40% from last year’s expo. More than half of those asking cited the new ordinance, known locally as Article 23 , as a reason to consider emigration.

“The Article 23 legislation has brought a significant catalyzing effect,” Li said.

China promised to keep Hong Kong’s relative freedom and way of life unchanged for 50 years when Britain handed over control of its former colony to Communist-ruled Beijing in 1997. Those Western-style civil liberties, such as free speech and a free press, were the cornerstones of the city’s status as an international financial hub.

FILE - A Hong Kong cityscape is pictured on March 19, 2024. The United States sees Hong Kong's new national security law as a tool to potentially silence dissent both at home and abroad, but has tread carefully so far in responding, a disappointment to those fighting for democracy and freedoms in the Chinese territory. (AP Photo/Louise Delmotte, File)

But since the 2020 law was imposed by Beijing after months of anti-government protests, they have been sharply curtailed. Many pro-democracy activists have been arrested, silenced or forced into exile. Dozens of civil society groups have been disbanded . Outspoken media like Apple Daily and Stand News have been shut down . And many disillusioned young professionals and middle-class families have emigrated to Britain, Canada and Taiwan.

Hong Kong’s Basic Law, or constitution, mandated that the city enact a national security law, but for 27 years the Legislative Council didn’t pass one, with widespread opposition to an earlier attempt to enact such a law in 2003. The Hong Kong government asserts the law is needed to prevent a recurrence of the tumultuous 2019 protests. It says the law balances national security with safeguarding freedoms.

Still, many fear falling afoul of the law — which targets colluding with “external forces” to endanger security, unlawful disclosure of state secrets, sabotage and espionage, among others. Grave acts such as treason and insurrection are punishable by up to life in prison. Some provisions allow criminal prosecution for acts committed anywhere in the world.

Facing those risks, some people have opted to play it safe.

An independent bookstore owner said it took about 30 books off the shelves, fearing it might be accused of distributing seditious publications. The titles were about the 2019 protests, Tibet and Xinjiang, all politically sensitive topics in mainland China. The books will be trashed.

The owner, who spoke on the condition of anonymity due to fear of government retribution, said they removed the books because of the harsher provisions of the new law, which allows police to seek court approval to extend the detention of suspects without charges and prohibit suspects from consulting certain lawyers. The bookseller worried they would not have a fair trial if charged.

“It’s a pity,” the bookseller said. “This is an unnecessary infringement of freedom of speech.”

Under the law, sedition offenses carry a sentence of up to seven years, or 10 years if a person is convicted of working with foreign governments or organizations to carry out the activities. The government maintains that criticism intended to improve its policies will not be prosecuted, but there has been less leeway for public dissent since the 2020 law took effect.

The League of Social Democrats, one of Hong Kong’s few remaining pro-democracy parties, will be more careful about its publicity materials to avoid being considered seditious, said its chairwoman, Chan Po-ying.

“When things are uncertain, anyone would get worried,” she said.

John Burns, an honorary professor of politics and public administration at the University of Hong Kong, said residents are adopting coping strategies seen on mainland China, avoiding voicing opinions that might get them in trouble. But Hong Kong still has more space for dissent than the mainland, he said.

“So caution rules,” he said.

Days after the law took effect, the U.S.-funded news outlet Radio Free Asia announced it was closing its Hong Kong bureau because of safety concerns under the new legislation and pointed to criticism by authorities. It was yet another narrowing of the space for press freedom at a time when local journalists are struggling with how to adjust to potential new risks.

Ronson Chan, an editor at online media Channel C HK, is personally handling sensitive stories to minimize risks for his colleagues due to the wider scope of the law’s definition of state secrets. The defintion echoes the one used in mainland China, which covers economic, social and technological developments and criminal investigations, beyond traditional areas of national security.

The law also is also prompting adjustments in the legal and business communities.

Dominic Chiu, a senior analyst at the Eurasia Group, said some companies, including law firms, already had taken the precaution of restricting access for their Hong Kong staff to their global databases. That might not involve an “all-out ban,” but instead might require special approval to access foreign clients’ files, he said.

Those steps, taken even before the first draft of the new law was made public, were prompted by a belief that Hong Kong will eventually align its data security policies with those in mainland China. So the companies aligned their data policies with those of mainland China, Chiu said.

Banks and technology companies have not yet made plans to leave Hong Kong, said George Chen, Hong Kong-based managing director for The Asia Group, a Washington-headquartered business and policy consultancy. After all, many of them operate in other Chinese cities. But some companies are internally reviewing whether certain sensitive roles, such as those handling user data, should be moved elsewhere, he said.

In an emailed response to questions from The Associated Press, the government said it strongly condemned “all scaremongering and smearing remarks” about the law. It said other countries have similar laws and that the law just improves Hong Kong’s legal framework for safeguarding national security, thereby creating a more stable business environment.

“To single out Hong Kong and suggest that journalists and businesses would only experience concerns when operating here but not in other places would be grossly biased, if not outrageous,” it said.

Officials say the law only targets “an extremely small minority of people” who jeopardize security, similar to what mainland Chinese officials say about Beijing’s own expanding national security precautions.

George Chen would like to hear less about the topic.

“Hong Kong has been through a lot over the past few years and now we hear more and more clients telling us — can Hong Kong now move on?” Chen said. “Let’s talk less about national security every day but focus more on the real economy and business.”

Associated Press writer Zen Soo contributed to this report.

how to cite an article law

Lawmakers unveil sprawling plan to expand online privacy protections

After years of contentious debate, the bipartisan measure marks a significant step toward passing a landmark federal privacy law.

how to cite an article law

Key federal lawmakers Sunday unveiled a sweeping proposal that would for the first time give consumers broad rights to control how tech companies like Google, Meta and TikTok use their personal data, a major breakthrough in the decades-long fight to adopt national online privacy protections.

The bipartisan agreement, struck by Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) and House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.), marks a milestone in the congressional debate over data privacy. The issue has befuddled lawmakers despite near-universal agreement — in Silicon Valley and in Washington — on the need for federal standards to determine how much information companies can collect from consumers online.

The measure, a copy of which was reviewed by The Washington Post, would set a national baseline for how a broad swath of companies can collect, use and transfer data on the internet. Dubbed the American Privacy Rights Act, it also would give users the right to opt out of certain data practices, including targeted advertising. And it would require companies to gather only as much information as they need to offer specific products to consumers, while giving people the ability to access and delete their data and transport it between digital services.

Significantly, the deal — one of Washington’s most significant efforts to catch up to privacy protections adopted in Europe nearly a decade ago — would resolve two issues that have bogged down negotiations for years : whether a federal law should override related state laws and whether consumers should be permitted to sue companies that violate the rules.

The bill would achieve a Republican goal by preempting more than a dozen “comprehensive” state privacy laws that have sprung up amid congressional inaction — including a watershed California measure — while allowing state rules on more-targeted issues like health or financial data to stand. Meanwhile, it would allow an enforcement method championed by Democrats: civil lawsuits that would let individuals seek financial damages if companies fail to fulfill data deletion requests or to obtain express consent before collecting sensitive data.

“We have to have a bright line here where we’re catching bad actors and policing the information age,” Cantwell told The Post in an interview Sunday.

In an interview Sunday with the Spokesman-Review of Spokane, Wash., McMorris Rodgers called it “a historic piece of legislation” that would “establish privacy protections that are stronger than any state law on the books.”

The Post and other news outlets reported Friday on the expected deal , but details of the proposal did not become public until Sunday. As the committees released two versions of the draft legislation, key lawmakers and industry leaders praised the proposal, even as some floated potential changes.

Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. (N.J.), the top Democrat on McMorris Rodgers’ committee, called it a “very strong discussion draft” but said there are “key areas” where it could be “strengthened,” including children’s privacy. Microsoft vice chairman and president Brad Smith, whose company hails from Washington state, called it a “good deal” that would “provide clarity by establishing a national standard” on privacy.

Even with the support of Cantwell and McMorris Rodgers, whose committees bear primary responsibility for privacy legislation, the measure faces uncertain prospects, however. It is a “discussion draft,” meaning the two committee chairs are likely to solicit input from other lawmakers and outside groups before formally introducing it.

And the window for passing any legislation — much less a complex online privacy bill — is fast closing before the November elections. With McMorris Rodgers set to step down from Congress in January, the need for action becomes even more urgent. But, Cantwell said: “A deadline is a good thing.”

Over the past half-decade, Congress has held dozens of hearings on data privacy as political scrutiny of technology companies’ alleged privacy abuses intensified, with lawmakers unveiling a flurry of proposals aimed at tackling those concerns. But no sweeping privacy legislation has been adopted by either chamber of Congress, and few measures have even gained significant traction.

During the previous Congress, House lawmakers including McMorris Rodgers advanced a sprawling privacy bill aimed at breaking the impasse. But key leaders — including Cantwell and former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) — spoke out against it.

At the time, Cantwell said the House measure would impose a multiyear delay on when consumers can bring their own lawsuits, criticizing that provision as one of the bill’s “major enforcement holes.” She also expressed concern that companies could weaken the law by forcing users into arbitration, a process that can require parties to resolve privacy disputes without going to court.

After the House bill stalled, privacy talks ramped back up in December, Cantwell said, when McMorris Rodgers approached her about reviving negotiations directly between the two of them.

The new legislation mirrors the House proposal in several ways: It would force companies to minimize and disclose their collection practices and let users correct or delete their own data. It also would bar companies from using the data they collect to discriminate against protected classes. And it would require them to appoint executive officers responsible for ensuring compliance with the law.

But the compromise measure also contains key differences: For example, it would not impose a delay on when individuals can file lawsuits and it would bar most arbitration agreements from interfering with the intent of the legislation — changes sought by Cantwell, who called it “night and day” compared to the House version.

A senior aide on the Senate Commerce Committee, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to preview the legislation, said Cantwell and McMorris Rodgers made it a priority to hash out those issues, along with Republican concerns about the ability of small businesses to comply with the measure’s provisions.

To that end, the proposal would exempt companies with less than $40 million in annual gross revenue from its requirements and would place heightened obligations — including a requirement to conduct regular privacy reviews — on “larger data holders” with more than $250 million in annual gross revenue.

The measure would not accomplish some other priorities. For example, it would not prohibit companies from targeting minors with ads, as President Biden called for during his State of the Union addresses . Nor would it create a “youth privacy and marketing division” at the Federal Trade Commission, as the previous House legislation proposed.

While the proposal is meant to offer “comprehensive” privacy protections, the senior Commerce Committee aide said it is seen as “complementary” to other bills on child safety and privacy that are expected to be taken up in the Senate. That includes a measure by Sen. Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) that would expand federal children’s privacy laws and another led by Sens. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) and Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) that would create new child safety obligations for digital platforms .

The measure would “terminate” the FTC’s efforts to craft new regulations on privacy , though the agency — along with state attorneys general — would be responsible for enforcing the measure. It also would largely strip the Federal Communications Commission of any privacy oversight in the telecommunications sector, bringing those matters under the purview of the FTC — a wrinkle that has in the past troubled consumer advocates .

The privacy compromise is part of a recent surge of activity on new internet policies. In February, Blumenthal and Blackburn announced that they had secured enough support for online child safety legislation to clear the Senate, teeing up a potential vote this year. In March, the House passed legislation to force TikTok to be sold by its Chinese parent or be banned in the United States, kicking the issue over to the Senate. A week later, the House passed a more narrow privacy bill aimed at stopping data brokers from selling U.S. user information to “foreign adversaries.”

“Going to be a very busy few months,” Cantwell said.

She said lawmakers will try to attach the child privacy and safety bills to an upcoming must-pass legislative package, and that her committee plans to take up the House data broker bill. As for the broader privacy bill, Cantwell said she plans to contact other lawmakers “in earnest” Monday.

It was not immediately clear how significant the bill’s support could be on Capitol Hill. Nor was it clear whether state leaders whose laws would be preempted by the measure would rally against it — something that muddled talks over privacy on Capitol Hill in the past.

“I do think people think a comprehensive policy is better as long as it can reach a strong, beefy standard,” Cantwell said, “which I think this does.”

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A federal judge says migrants can sue the company that flew them to Martha's Vineyard

how to cite an article law

Venezuelan migrants gather at the Vineyard Haven ferry terminal in Marthas Vineyard. The group was transported to Joint Base Cape Cod in Buzzards Bay. Carlin Stiehl for The Boston Globe via Getty Images hide caption

Venezuelan migrants gather at the Vineyard Haven ferry terminal in Marthas Vineyard. The group was transported to Joint Base Cape Cod in Buzzards Bay.

MIAMI — A federal judge in Boston has ruled that migrants flown from Texas to Martha's Vineyard in 2022 can proceed with a lawsuit against the Florida company that took them there.

The judge also dismissed claims against Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and other officials named in the suit.

Migrants on Martha's Vineyard flight say they were told they were going to Boston

Migrants on Martha's Vineyard flight say they were told they were going to Boston

After migrants arrived in Martha's Vineyard, a community gathered to welcome them

After migrants arrived in Martha's Vineyard, a community gathered to welcome them

Three migrants from Venezuela, along with an immigrant rights group, filed the lawsuit. They say that Florida's governor, others in his administration and an air transport company conspired to mislead them and deprive them of their civil rights when they recruited and flew them to Martha's Vineyard in 2022.

In their lawsuit, the migrants, identified as Yanet, Pablo and Jesus say they were told they were going to Massachusetts, but didn't know their final destination was Martha's Vineyard until shortly before landing.

The plaintiffs say a videographer hired by the DeSantis administration recorded them arriving and boarding vans. But apart from the videographer and van drivers, the plaintiffs say no one else in Martha's Vineyard had any advance notice of their arrival .

In her order, U.S. District Judge Allison Burroughs says the case can proceed against the air transport company, Vertol. Judge Burroughs dismissed claims against Gov. DeSantis and other members of his administration out of jurisdictional concerns, but did so "without prejudice." That means the legal team representing the migrants can seek to bring DeSantis and others back into the case as it goes forward.

Migrants sent to Martha's Vineyard are being rehoused on a base in Cape Cod

Migrants sent to Martha's Vineyard are being rehoused on a base in Cape Cod

In the 77-page filing , Judge Burroughs had harsh words for those involved in the scheme. "Vertol and the other Defendants here were not legitimately enforcing any immigration laws," she wrote, adding, "the Court sees no legitimate purpose for rounding up highly vulnerable individuals on false pretenses and publicly injecting them into a divisive national debate."

Lawyers for Civil Rights, which represents the migrants, called the ruling "a major victory in the Martha's Vineyard case, and it sends a crucial message: private companies can — and will — be held accountable for helping rogue state actors violate the rights of vulnerable immigrants through illegal and fraudulent schemes."

But Brian Kelly, a lawyer representing Vertol said, "We are pleased that most of the case has now been dismissed and believe the Lawyers for Civil Rights are once again mistaken in their analysis of the situation."

  • Florida Governor Ron DeSantis
  • Martha's Vineyard

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  1. 4 Ways to Cite Law Review Articles

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  2. McGill 8th Edition

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  3. The Basics

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  4. Easy Ways to Cite Laws in APA: 6 Steps (with Pictures)

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  5. How to Cite Using Harvard Bluebook: Law Reviews

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COMMENTS

  1. APA Legal References

    You should check the Bluebook for state statutes as some states use chapter or article numbers rather than sections; similarly the Bluebook contains all necessary abbreviations and symbols. Some federal statutes may include public law numbers, which you can use in the reference list entry in place of the U.S.C. publication information.

  2. How to Cite a Law in APA Style

    Revised on December 27, 2023. To cite federal laws (also commonly referred to as statutes or acts) in APA Style, include the name of the law, "U.S.C." (short for United States Code ), the title and section of the code where the law appears, the year, and optionally the URL. The year included is when the law was published in the source ...

  3. Citing Other Resources

    Rule 16 covers how to cite law reviews and journals, newspapers, and other periodic materials. A citation to a consecutively paginated* journal article includes the following six elements: Author's full name as it appears on the article. Title of the article (underlined or italicized) Volume number.

  4. Bluebook Legal Citation System Guide

    The Bluebook is a guide to a system of legal citation frequently used by law schools and law journals. This guide will introduce you to how to use the Bluebook. The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Legal Citation by the editors of the Columbia law review, the Harvard law review, the University of Pennsylvania law review, and the Yale law journal.

  5. Basic Legal Citation

    Citing Agency Material ... in Brief; The Bluebook; ALWD Citation Manual; eBook. PDF; WHAT AND WHY? Introduction; Purposes of Legal Citation; Types of Citation Principles; Levels of Mastery; Citation in Transition; Who Sets Citation Norms; HOW TO CITE ... Electronic Resources; Judicial Opinions; Constitutions & Statutes

  6. APA Style 7th Edition: Citing Your Sources

    Use this format for enacted bill or resolution not signed into law; Bills and resolutions passed by Congress & signed by the President to become law should be cited as statutes . Additional Resources: Legal Information Institute at Cornell Law School: Guidance on legal citations. Verify legal references containing necessary information and ...

  7. Citation Help for APA, 7th Edition: Legal Materials

    When citing legal sources, APA Style follows the standard legal citation style used across all disciplines. APA provides examples of legal references; however, they advise to consult The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation, 20th edition.Additionally, the APA Manual suggests seeking assistance from law school websites or law libraries.

  8. Libraries: Researching a Legal Topic: Citing to Legal Documents

    A legal citation is a reference to a legal document such as a case, statute, law review article, etc. Most legal citations consist of the name of the document (case, statute, law review article), an abbreviation for the legal series, and the date. The abbreviation for the legal series usually appears as a number followed by the abbreviated name ...

  9. How to Read a Legal Citation

    A citation (or cite) in legal terminology is a reference to a specific legal source, such as a constitution, a statute, a reported case, a treatise, or a law review article. A standard citation includes first the volume number, then the title of the source, (usually abbreviated) and lastly, a page or section number.

  10. Website: Guide for Law Journal Students: Citations

    3. Create a new group for "Peer Journals" and click on "Done Organizing" after saving it. 4. Click "Secondary Sources" on the main home page and then "Law Reviews & Journals." Click on "Massachusetts" and then "Harvard Law Review." 5. Click on the star next to its name to add it to your "Peer Journals" folder.

  11. APA 7th ed. Style Guide: Legal Sources

    In APA Style, most legal materials are cited in the standard legal citation style used for legal references across all disciplines. This legal style has notable differences from other APA Style formats. For more information on preparing legal references, consult The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation.

  12. Law Reviews, Magazines, and Newspapers

    In your citation to a journal article, immediately following the name of the journal, you should indicate the page on which the article begins. Immediately after the first page, you should place a comma followed by a pinpoint citation to specific pages after a comma.

  13. Journal Articles

    Select Law Library as your pickup location; Enter the Your Journal volume.issue, your article author name, and the citation for the article you need scanned in the notes field. Ex., NULR 117.1 Smith, need article by Reich, 73 Yale L.J. 733-738

  14. Legal, Public and Unpublished Materials

    When writing for law journals or other legal publications, these sources are not usually required to be cited in a bibliography or on a references page. Citation sentences alone are an acceptable form of citation, so long as the document has only a few legal citations (for more information, see The Chicago Manual of Style, 17th ed., sections 14 ...

  15. Federal Laws/Statutes

    When a statute applies to numerous sections of the Code, and you wish to cite the Act as a whole, cite using the Public law number.. To determine where the statute is codified (where it appears in the United States Code), follow this process:. Find the U.S.C. number listed in the header of the law.

  16. How to Cite a Journal Article

    A bibliography entry for a journal article lists the title of the article in quotation marks and the journal name in italics—both in title case. List up to 10 authors in full; use "et al." for 11 or more. In the footnote, use "et al." for four or more authors. Chicago format. Author last name, First name.

  17. Cite Checking

    Cite checking is primarily about making sure the sources cited in the footnotes support the author's associated claims. Basically, you're helping make sure the article is "good," as in accurate (the citation content and format leads the reader to the correct source), valid (the source actually supports the author's claim/statement), non-plagiarized (every proposition is properly credited), and ...

  18. Law Reviews/Articles & Other Non-Book Publications

    Author; article title; volume; law review title; page number; pinpoint cite; year. Note: In court documents (bluepages), the article title is underlined. In law reviews, the journal name is in small-caps and the article title is italicized. For short forms, see Rule 16.9.

  19. Journal article references

    If a journal article has a DOI, include the DOI in the reference. Always include the issue number for a journal article. If the journal article does not have a DOI and is from an academic research database, end the reference after the page range (for an explanation of why, see the database information page).The reference in this case is the same as for a print journal article.

  20. How to Cite a Law in Harvard Style?

    In academic texts, laws might be cited. The term 'law' is an umbrella term, which is used to mean either one of the following: Legal cases: Legal cases are mostly included in the reference list, but only if they are highly important for the overall understanding of the text or what the text is claiming. In other words, to support a claim or suggestion made in the text, writers can include ...

  21. In-Text Citations: The Basics

    APA Citation Basics. When using APA format, follow the author-date method of in-text citation. This means that the author's last name and the year of publication for the source should appear in the text, like, for example, (Jones, 1998). One complete reference for each source should appear in the reference list at the end of the paper.

  22. How to Cite a Journal Article in APA Style

    If you want to cite a special issue of a journal rather than a regular article, the name (s) of the editor (s) and the title of the issue appear in place of the author's name and article title: APA format. Last name, Initials. (Ed. or Eds.). ( Year ). Title of issue [Special issue]. Journal Name, Volume ( Issue ).

  23. How Tech Giants Cut Corners to Harvest Data for A.I

    The companies' actions illustrate how online information — news stories, fictional works, message board posts, Wikipedia articles, computer programs, photos, podcasts and movie clips — has ...

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    The draft law would replace Law No. 88 of 2011 on regulating the work of nongovernmental organizations. Explanatory Memorandum. According to the explanatory memorandum for the draft law, the new law would be in conformity with the Tunisian Constitution of 2022 and assert the constitutional principle of sovereignty of the Tunisian state. The ...

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    Mexico decried the raid as "an outrage against international law," while the United Nations voiced concern. Under diplomatic norms, embassies are generally considered protected spaces.

  26. How to Cite Sources

    To quote a source, copy a short piece of text word for word and put it inside quotation marks. To paraphrase a source, put the text into your own words. It's important that the paraphrase is not too close to the original wording. You can use the paraphrasing tool if you don't want to do this manually.

  27. Beneath the calm, Hong Kong's new security law drives deeper, quieter

    Hong Kong's Basic Law, or constitution, mandated that the city enact a national security law, but for 27 years the Legislative Council didn't pass one, with widespread opposition to an earlier attempt to enact such a law in 2003. The Hong Kong government asserts the law is needed to prevent a recurrence of the tumultuous 2019 protests.

  28. Cantwell, McMorris Rodgers unveil sprawling online privacy bill

    Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) and Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) announced a major breakthrough in the decades-long fight to address online privacy.

  29. Migrants can sue company that flew them to Martha's Vineyard : NPR

    MIAMI — A federal judge in Boston has ruled that migrants flown from Texas to Martha's Vineyard in 2022 can proceed with a lawsuit against the Florida company that took them there. The judge ...