Monday, August 22, 2011

The 14th Thing - cite unseen

Uh-oh, Thing 14's going to be another one of those ones that I'm not really going to be investigating. Not because I'm lazy, but because it's just not relevant in my current workplace: the only sort of citations we're bothered about here are the legal ones. In fact, the ones we're mainly concerned about here are the incorrect legal citations, and the time we have to waste trying to figure out the correct ones. Top news: advocates don't actually always double check their case references...who knew!

I'm trying hard to think of a good reason for me to spend time poking about on Thing 14's suggested tools, but the last time I had to properly cite a bibliographic reference would have been at least 10 years ago. It's not a skill I feel that I need to have in my current role. We don't have users that need to cite material in an academic form, not do we need to support this sort of academic work.

If I do ever end up being thrown out of legal libraries and into the Big Bad World, and end trying to move into work in academic libraries, those tools will be either gone, or available in newer, updated versions. Therefore, it would be better for me to spend the time on learning about them when I need to and they could be useful, rather than now when it's just taking up time that I could be spending on other activities.

Perhaps when I start my open University course in November I'll return to look at these tools, as I may be required to cite materials, but I imagine as it's an online course, a lot of the questions I may have on producing materials for the course will be answered with the accompanying handouts, or in the online support areas.

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