Girl screamingIt was with a heavy sigh that all who hold citing sources near and dear to our hearts took in the news that both the APA and MLA had created new style manuals. This means new rules to learn, old habits to unlearn and making sure we know the difference as soon as possible so we can teach others. But it was true the world had become a different place since the last style manuals were minted and it was time for an update.
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Considering all of the different bodies that cite sources in academia one would think that the creators of the style manuals would take this task very seriously. One would think that there would be bountiful harvests of editors going over the manual with fresh eyes and testing every aspect of the little gem before publication.
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Apparently not, last week the APA released dozens of corrections to the manual that was originally printed in July. What about those of us who have purchased the manual? No replacement will be sent, we are encouraged to download the corrections from this site http://apastyle.org/ that would be the APA home page. Go there and try to figure out where the corrections are hidden, it is not easy (insert nerdy Hitchhikers Guide joke here about being hidden in a basement lavatory, inside a locked filing cabinet with a sign that reads “beware of the leopard”).  In fact, if you didn’t know already you would think that the new manual had been hunky dory since it’s first printing.Once you find the 15 pages of corrections you are expected to go into your manual and make the changes yourself by hand.
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Of course, the librarian community found these errors weeks ago and has been “musing” about what will be done. As we are a helpful people we have been finding the errors and sharing what we think are corrections or eliminations among ourselves. There has been quite a bit of confusion and no shortage of colorful commentary. Undoubtedly the new news will not go over well either.
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