Citing Internet Sources in Chicago Style
Remember that entries in the Works Cited list are listed alphabetically
This page covers web pages and articles in periodical databases
such as Lexis-Nexis Academic Universe, FirstSearch, Proquest
Direct, JSTOR, Science Direct, etc.
Do not just copy the "citation"
given by the databases. While this part provides important
information, it often leaves out the far more important information
of the access date and the database name. It may also not
be in Chicago style.
The citation for an electronic source includes citation for any
print counterpart of the source, followed by information about the
electronic resource. It is crucial that this information be
included, because the electronic resource may be an updated version
of the print counterpart. The date the electronic resource
was accessed is important because the resource may be changed before
someone looking at your sources checks it.
When citing a web page, you should cite the specific page
from which you obtained information, not the site's home page.
Remember that a citation is supposed to make it so your reader can
find your original source; including the home page of a large site
will do little good.
The information on this page is based on Online!
and details from the pages for print sources. The Chicago
Manual of Style was last revised in 1993, and does not yet include
any official information on online sources. The Chicago
Manual of Style FAQ does not include any information on online
sources, but instead links to other citation styles. Thus,
the information presented here is not official Chicago style, but
instead an attempt to synthesize a consistent style.
The components of a note for articles from an online source, listed
in the proper order:
the first (or only) author, include the author's name
in inverted order. If the middle initial is known,
include it and follow it with a period, e.g. "Last,
First M." [Example]
For two authors, list the authors
in the order in which they appear on the title page.
Format names as above and separate names with "and."
For three authors, list them in
the order in which they appear on the title page. Format
names as above, follow the first and second names with
a comma, and precede the last with "and."
For more than three authors, list
only the first author, followed by "et al."
(with the ending period).
If the author's name appears in the
title (such as an autobiography, collected works book,
etc.), omit this part and begin the note with the title.
If the author's name is known, but
not given on the title page, enclose it in brackets.
If the work is anonymous, omit
this part and begin the note with the title.
If no author is listed on the title
page, but instead editor(s), compiler(s), or translator(s),
list the editor(s), compiler(s), or translator(s) here
instead. Follow the name(s) with a comma, and "ed."
or "eds." for editor(s), "trans."
for translators, and "comp." or "comps."
For examples on author variations, see
the Books page.
of a Short Work
- If you're citing an article, short
story, poem, etc., enclose the title of the article
or the headline within quotation marks. [Example]
- If you're citing a web page, enclose the title
of the page within quotation marks. Use either the
header of the page or the title that displays in the Netscape
title bar. (If the page has frames, it's best to right
click and choose "Open Frame in New Window" to
get the frame title.)
- If you're citing an e-mail, enclose the subject
line within quotation marks as the title. Use standard
capitalization for the
subject line. [Example]
- If you're citing a posting to a discussion list or
- Enclose the subject line within quotation marks as
the title. Put a period within the quotation marks.
Use standard capitalization
for the subject line.
- If there is a title within the title, use single
quotation marks (like apostrophes) for the shorter title.
- The comma goes inside the quotation marks. [Example]
of a Book
- If you're citing an entire
site, give its title in italics. [Example]
- If the work is from a book, encyclopedia, dictionary,
or report, include its title, italicized.
- If there is a title within the title, do not italicize
or underline the shorter title. If the shorter title
is usually within quotation marks, retain the quotation
- Click here for notes
- If there is a print counterpart
of the article or book published on the Internet, give
the publication details of the print version, i.e. finish
off the complete citation for the print counterpart:
- Books: Add the:
- Encyclopedias and Dictionaries: Add the edition/date.
- Articles from magazines, journals, and newspapers:
- Give the date the article or
page was last updated or posted. Include
as much of the day, month (not abbreviated), and year (four
digits) as is given, e.g. "4 July 2000" or "July
2000" or "2000." [Example]
- The last update date of a web page is usually given at
the bottom or top of a page. A posting date may also
be given on the page one level higher (such as a page that
is an index of articles).
- For an email, give the date of sending. [Example]
- If the article is
from a subscription service, include the name of the
service (in plain text). [Example]
- If the library is a subscriber to the service, place
a period after the service name, and then include the following,
separated by commas:
- The name of the library.
- The city (and state, if the city is not well-known)
of the library. [Example]
- If the source is a web page,
enclose the URL (or web address) of the page within angle
brackets (< >). [Example]
- If the source page has frames, it is best to use the
URL of the frame you're citing. In Netscape, you
can locate that URL by right clicking the frame and
selecting "Open Frame in New Window."
- If the article is from a subscription service,
give the URL of the service's main page in angle brackets
(< >). [Example]
- In a printed essay, the URL should not be a link,
although Word's AutoCorrect feature will convert text it
thinks is a web address to a link. To convert this
URL back to plain text, type Ctrl+Z (Undo) immediately.
You can also turn
off this feature permanently.
- If you have to split the URL onto multiple lines,
split it only after a slash. [Example]
- For an email, write "personal email"
here (not in < >). [Example]
||None (a single space)
- Include the date you accessed
the source. Use the following order: day (digits),
month (abbreviated), and year (four digits), e.g. "4
July 2000." [Example]
- Enclose this date within parentheses and put the ending
period outside the parentheses. [Example]
- This date is different from the update
date, which gives the date the page was last updated.
It is when you looked at it, and it is important because
the site may have changed since then.
Citation Examples (from Online!)
Pellegrino, Joseph. "Homepage," 12 May 1999, <http://www.english.eku.edu/pellegrino/
default.htm> (12 June 1999).
Mortimer, Gail. The William Faulkner Society Home Page, 16 September 1999,
<http://www.utep.edu/mortimer/faulkner/main_faulkner.htm> (19 November 1997).
National Association of Investors Corporation. NAIC Online, 20 September 1999,
<http://www.better-investing.org> (1 October 1999).
Franke, Norman. "SoundApp 2.0.2," 2 April 1996, personal email (3 May 1996).
More examples can be found
Citation Examples for Databases from the
Barnett, Andy, "A Survey of Internet Searches and their Results," Reference
and User Services Quarterly 39, no. 2 (1999): 177-81, FirstSearch, L. A. Beeghly Library,
Huntingdon, PA, <http://firstsearch.oclc.org> (4 July 2000).
Zuckerman, Sam, "Bank Wins Round on ATM Fees; Judge Rules S.F. Surcharge Allowed,"
San Francisco Chronicle 4 July 2000, 1, Lexis-Nexis Academic Universe, L. A. Beeghly Library,
Huntingdon, PA, <http://web.lexis-nexis.com/universe> (4 July 2000).