[WEB4LIB] Re: Citation creation code?

Erwin, Patricia J. erwin.patricia at mayo.edu
Thu Feb 24 11:46:53 EST 2005

Amen. There are a number of studies in the medical literature than have found an error rate of 15-25% in the bibliographies of peer-reviewed articles in prestigious journals.  I have noticed many publishers are requiring the first and last page of each cited reference to be attached to the manuscript. 

Many years ago, I spent 3 blasphemous months verifying references for a book, many of which were incorrect, incomplete or just plain wrong.  Most of the references came from other published work.  

And as Elizabeth mentions, this doesn't touch on casual plagiarism by scholars who are aware of what they are doing.

Patricia J. Erwin aka "Pat"
Mayo Clinic College of Medicine Libraries
200 First Street SW
Rochester MN 55905 
erwin.patricia at mayo.edu

-----Original Message-----
From: web4lib at webjunction.org [mailto:web4lib at webjunction.org] On Behalf Of Elizabeth Thomsen
Sent: Thursday, February 24, 2005 10:38 AM
To: Multiple recipients of list
Subject: [WEB4LIB] Re: Citation creation code?

In response to Steve's citation rant, which began this way:
> Regarding citations themselves...ahh, the fun territory that is
> citations. I've often found that from experience and stories related
> from teachers/library staff that students do not have the necessary
> information to cite properly...

I agree with what Steve says, and especially his list of the overly
casual if not blatantly dishonest ways that students make up for the
deficiencies in their research and notetaking.    

But though it's easy for us to shake our heads at these lazy and
ill-prepared undergraduates (these kids today!) we should remember that
this is a problem at all levels.  In recent years, Doris Kearns Goodwin,
Stephen Ambrose, Charles Ogletree and other well-known authors have had
to admit to failings in their published work.   

I just read Richard Pollak's "The Making of Dr. B.," a biography of Bruno 
Bettelheim, which is interesting to read just from the point of view of
scholarly lapses, failure to cite, and overt deceptions, and how easy it
can be to get away with this!  

Librarians and others worry over the accuracy and authority of
information found online, but I think we all need to be just as careful
about print resources of all kinds, and not assume that editors and
publishers are subjecting texts to a rigorous fact and citation checking.

Elizabeth Thomsen, Member Services Manager
NOBLE: North of Boston Library Exchange
Danvers MA 01923
et at noblenet.org

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