Citing Internet Information In Your Term PaperPosted: May 7, 2012
I say so many things. Usually those things are reliable. But that “usually” implies that sometimes I say things are not reliable. That’s true.
Like a lot of people, sometimes I say things that I believe are clearly unreliable. I intend to be funny by doing so and it doesn’t occur to me that anyone could ever take them seriously. Silly, clearly unreliable things make up about half the posts here on Blurt.
Fool You Once, Shame On Me
It seems people have different ideas on how clear it is when I am unreliable. You see, last week, someone cited a post of mine for some scholarly purpose.
Several months ago, I wrote a post about a historical figure whose demise triggered the start of World War I. The post contains references to Sonny Corleone, rodeo clowns and running with a stick. I didn’t put those references in to make it clear that I really knew nothing about what I was writing about. They are there because they fit the humor of the piece.
But they should have made it clear that I really knew nothing about what I was writing about. It didn’t though. I’ve suspected that some were accessing that post in the course of their school work because it gets a lot of visits.
Then, last week, I got proof. Someone put the web address of that post into a site that generates bibliographic citations formatted for use in research papers. I’m honored and frightened to report that somewhere, someone, has cited in their term paper a post that I wrote that claims that the Archduke of Austria once dressed as a wounded gazelle to lure in a cheetah on a safari.
That someone’s getting an F.
Fool You Twice, Shame On You
Most of my regular readers do not have to write papers anymore. And all my readers that I’ve communicated with through comments or email, seem like bright people with the wisdom to separate foolishness from academically valid information.
In the event you’ve found this post while scouring the internet for tidbits to add into a paper you have coming due, please let me clue you in.
Even though I have written and posted these things on the net, they are not actually true:
- The man whose assassination precipitated the start of the first world war, did not work his way through college as a rodeo clown.
- There was never a controversy about William Shakespeare’s buttocks. They did not x-ray his butt by having him stand in front of several hundred candles.
- Mayor McCheese is not really the greatest politician ever. The truth is, politicians and greatness do not intersect.
The world is a tricky place, kids. It is trickier if you don’t bother thinking about what you see, hear, or read.
Decide for yourself.