+1(978)310-4246 credencewriters@gmail.com
  

Instructions

Using the information from this week’s reading material, submit an Annotated Bibliography of five (5) sources from your working bibliography. First, put the source in the correct citation format for your particular curricular division, and then write a brief annotation of that source.  The annotation should describe the main ideas covered in the source as well as an evaluation by you for the source’s usefulness for your project. The value of the source to your project should be included, as well as information about the credentials of the author(s).

Remember that an online source can be a number of things. It can be a book, journal article, blog, podcast script, website, government report, newspaper article or editorial, or something else. Be sure to analyze each source carefully and follow the style guide in presenting the needed info.  One goal in your annotation is to help your readers find the source if they want more information, so make it easy for them to do so.

Annoying Ways People Use Sources
by Kyle D. Stedman
This essay is a chapter in Writing Spaces: Readings on
Writing, Volume 2, a peer-reviewed open textbook series for
the writing classroom.
Download the full volume and individual chapters from:
• Writing Spaces: http://writingspaces.org/essays
• Parlor Press: http://parlorpress.com/writingspaces
• WAC Clearinghouse: http://wac.colostate.edu/books/
Print versions of the volume are available for purchase directly from Parlor
Press and through other booksellers.
This essay is available under a Creative Commons License subject to the Writing Spaces’
Terms of Use. More information, such as the specific license being used, is available at the
bottom of the first page of the chapter.
© 2011 by the respective author(s). For reprint rights and other permissions, contact the
original author(s).
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Writing spaces : readings on writing. Volume 1 / edited by Charles Lowe and Pavel
Zemliansky.
p. cm.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
ISBN 978-1-60235-184-4 (pbk. : alk. paper) — ISBN 978-1-60235-185-1 (adobe ebook)
1. College readers. 2. English language–Rhetoric. I. Lowe, Charles, 1965- II. Zemliansky,
Pavel.
PE1417.W735 2010
808’.0427–dc22
2010019487
Annoying Ways People Use Sources
Kyle D. Stedman
How Slow Driving Is Like Sloppy Writing
I hate slow drivers.* When I’m driving in the fast lane, maintaining
the speed limit exactly, and I find myself behind someone who thinks
the fast lane is for people who drive ten miles per hour below the speed
limit, I get an annoyed feeling in my chest like hot water filling a
heavy bucket. I wave my arms around and yell, “What . . . ? But, hey .
. . oh come on!” There are at least two explanations for why some slow
drivers fail to move out of the way:
1. They don’t know that the generally accepted practice of highway driving in the U.S. is to move to the right if an upcoming
car wants to pass. Or,
2. They know the guidelines but don’t care.
But here’s the thing: writers can forget that their readers are sometimes
just as annoyed at writing that fails to follow conventions as drivers
are when stuck behind a car that fails to move over. In other words,
there’s something similar between these two people: the knowledgeable driver who thinks, “I thought all drivers knew that the left lane is
* This work is licensed under the Creative Commons AttributionNoncommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License and is subject to the
Writing Spaces’ Terms of Use. To view a copy of this license, visit http://
creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/us/ or send a letter to Creative
Commons, 171 Second Street, Suite 300, San Francisco, California, 94105,
USA. To view the Writing Spaces’ Terms of Use, visit http://writingspaces.
org/terms-of-use.
242
Annoying Ways People Use Sources
243
for the fastest cars,” and the reader who thinks, “I thought all writers
knew that outside sources should be introduced, punctuated, and cited
according to a set of standards.”
One day, you may discover that something you’ve written has just
been read by a reader who, unfortunately, was annoyed at some of the
ways you integrated sources. She was reading along and then suddenly exclaimed, “What . . . ? But, hey . . . oh come on!” If you’re lucky,
this reader will try to imagine why you typed things the way you did,
giving you the benefit of the doubt. But sometimes you’ll be slotted
into positions that might not really be accurate. When this frustrated
reader walks away from your work, trying to figure out, say, why you
used so many quotations, or why you kept starting and ending paragraphs with them, she may come to the same conclusions I do about
slow drivers:
1. You don’t know the generally accepted practices of using sources (especially in academic writing) in the U.S. Or,
2. You know the guidelines but don’t care.
And it will be a lot harder for readers to take you seriously if they think
you’re ignorant or rude.
This judgment, of course, will often be unfair. These readers might
completely ignore the merits of your insightful, stylistically beautiful,
or revolutionarily important language—just as my anger at another
driver makes me fail to admire his custom paint job. But readers and
writers don’t always see eye to eye on the same text. In fact, some
things I write about in this essay will only bother your pickiest readers
(some teachers, some editors, some snobby friends), while many other
readers might zoom past how you use sources without blinking. But in
my experience, I find that teachers do a disservice when we fail to alert
students to the kind of things that some readers might be annoyed
at—however illogical these things sometimes seem. People are often
unreasonably picky, and writers have to deal with that—which they
do by trying to anticipate and preemptively fix whatever might annoy
a broad range of readers. Plus, the more effectively you anticipate that
pickiness, the more likely it is that readers will interpret your quotations and paraphrases in the way you want them to—critically or acceptingly, depending on your writing context.
244
Kyle D. Stedman
It helps me to remember that the conventions of writing have a
fundamentally rhetorical nature. That is, I follow different conventions depending on the purpose and audience of my writing, because I
know that I’ll come across differently to different people depending on
how well I follow the conventions expected in any particular writing
space. In a blog, I cite a source by hyperlinking; in an academic essay,
I use a parenthetical citation that refers to a list of references at the end
of the essay. One of the fundamental ideas of rhetoric is that speakers/writers/composers shape what they say/write/create based on what
they want it to do, where they’re publishing it, and what they know
about their audience/readers. And those decisions include nitty-gritty
things like introducing quotations and citing paraphrases clearly: not
everyone in the entire world approaches these things the same way,
but when I strategically learn the expectations of my U.S. academic
audience, what I really want to say comes across smoothly, without
little annoying blips in my readers’ experience. Notice that I’m not
saying that there’s a particular right or wrong way to use conventions
in my writing—if the modern U.S. academic system had evolved from
a primarily African or Asian or Latin American cultural consciousness
instead of a European one, conventions for writing would probably be
very different. That’s why they’re conventions and not rules.
The Annoyances
Because I’m not here to tell you rules, decrees, or laws, it makes sense
to call my classifications annoyances. In the examples that follow, I
wrote all of the annoying examples myself, but all the examples I use
of good writing come from actual student papers in first year composition classes at my university; I have their permission to quote them.
Armadillo Roadkill
Armadillo Roadkill:
Everyone in the car hears it: buh-BUMP. dropping in a quotation
The driver insists to the passengers, “But without introducing it
that armadillo—I didn’t see it! It just came first
out of nowhere!”
Sadly, a poorly introduced quotation can
lead readers to a similar exclamation: “It just came out of nowhere!”
And though readers probably won’t experience the same level of grief
and regret when surprised by a quotation as opposed to an armadillo,
I submit that there’s a kinship between the experiences: both involve a
Annoying Ways People Use Sources
245
normal, pleasant activity (driving; reading) stopped suddenly short by
an unexpected barrier (a sudden armadillo; a sudden quotation).
Here’s an example of what I’m talking about:
We should all be prepared with a backup plan if a zombie
invasion occurs. “Unlike its human counterparts, an army of
zombies is completely independent of support” (Brooks 155).
Preparations should be made in the following areas. . . .
Did you notice how the quotation is dropped in without any kind of
warning? (Buh-BUMP.)
The Fix: The easiest way to effectively massage in quotations is by
purposefully returning to each one in your draft to see if you set the
stage for your readers—often, by signaling that a quote is about to
come, stating who the quote came from, and showing how your readers should interpret it. In the above example, that could be done by
introducing the quotation with something like this (new text bolded):
We should all be prepared with a backup plan if a zombie
invasion occurs. Max Brooks suggests a number of ways
to prepare for zombies’ particular traits, though he underestimates the ability of humans to survive in harsh
environments. For example, he writes, “Unlike its human
counterparts, an army of zombies is completely independent
of support” (155). His shortsightedness could have a number of consequences. . . .
In this version, I know a quotation is coming (“For example”), I know
it’s going to be written by Max Brooks, and I know I’m being asked to
read the quote rather skeptically (“he underestimates”). The sentence
with the quotation itself also now begins with a “tag” that eases us into
it (“he writes”).
Here’s an actual example from Alexsandra. Notice the way she
builds up to the quotation and then explains it:
In the first two paragraphs, the author takes a defensive position when explaining the perception that the public has about
scientists by saying that “there is anxiety that scientists lack
both wisdom and social responsibility and are so motivated
by ambition . . .” and “scientists are repeatedly referred to as
‘playing God’” (Wolpert 345). With this last sentence especially, his tone seems to demonstrate how he uses the ethos
246
Kyle D. Stedman
appeal to initially set a tone of someone that is tired of being
misunderstood.
Alexsandra prepares us for the quotation, quotes, and then analyzes it.
I love it. This isn’t a hard and fast rule—I’ve seen it broken by the best
of writers, I admit—but it’s a wise standard to hold yourself to unless
you have a reason not to.
Dating Spider-Man
An annoyance that’s closely connected to Dating Spider-Man:
Armadillo Roadkill is the tendency writ- starting or ending a paraers sometimes have of starting or ending graph with a quotation
paragraphs with quotations. This isn’t
technically wrong, and there are situations when the effect of surprise is what you’re going for. But often,
a paragraph-beginning or paragraph-closing quotation feels rushed,
unexplained, disjointed.
It’s like dating Spider-Man. You’re walking along with him and
he says something remarkably interesting—but then he tilts his head,
hearing something far away, and suddenly shoots a web onto the nearest building and zooms away through the air. As if you had just read an
interesting quotation dangling at the end of a paragraph, you wanted
to hear more of his opinion, but it’s too late—he’s already moved on.
Later, he suddenly jumps off a balcony and is by your side again, and
he starts talking about something you don’t understand. You’re confused because he just dropped in and expected you to understand the
context of what was on his mind at that moment, much like when
readers step into a paragraph that begins with a quotation. Here’s an
example:
[End of a preceding paragraph:] . . . Therefore, the evidence
clearly suggests that we should be exceptionally careful about
deciding when and where to rest.
“When taking a nap, always rest your elbow on your desk
and keep your arm perpendicular to your desktop” (Piven and
Borgenicht 98). After all, consider the following scenario. . . .
There’s a perfectly good reason why this feels odd—which should feel
familiar after reading about the Armadillo Roadkill annoyance above.
When you got to the quotation in the second paragraph, you didn’t
Annoying Ways People Use Sources
247
know what you were supposed to think about it; there was no guidance.
The Fix is the same: in the majority of situations, readers appreciate being guided to and led away from a quotation by the writer doing
the quoting. Readers get a sense of pleasure from the safe flow of hearing how to read an upcoming quotation, reading it, and then being
told one way to interpret it. Prepare, quote, analyze.
I mentioned above that there can be situations where starting a
paragraph with a quotation can have a strong effect. Personally, I usually enjoy this most at the beginning of essays or the beginning of sections—like in this example from the very beginning of Jennifer’s essay:
“Nothing is ever simple: Racism and nobility can exist in the
same man, hate and love in the same woman, fear and loyalty, compromise and idealism, all the yin-yang dichotomies
that make the human species so utterly confounding, yet so
utterly fascinating” (Hunter). The hypocrisy and complexity
that Stephen Hunter from the Washington Post describes is the
basis of the movie Crash (2004).
Instantly, her quotation hooks me. It doesn’t feel thoughtless, like it
would feel if I continued to be whisked to quotations without preparation throughout the essay. But please don’t overdo it; any quotation
that opens an essay or section ought to be integrally related to your
topic (as is Jennifer’s), not just a cheap gimmick.
Uncle Barry and his
Uncle Barry and His Encyclopedia of UseEncyclopedia of Useless
less Information
Information: using too
You probably know someone like this: a many quotations in a row
person (for me, my Uncle Barry) who constantly tries to impress me with how much he knows about just about
everything. I might casually bring up something in the news (“Wow,
these health care debates are getting really heated, aren’t they?”) and
then find myself barraged by all of Uncle Barry’s ideas on governmentsponsored health care—which then drifts into a story about how his
cousin Maxine died in an underfunded hospice center, which had a
parking lot that he could have designed better, which reminds him of
how good he is at fixing things, just like the garage door at my parents’
house, which probably only needs a little. . . . You get the idea. I might
248
Kyle D. Stedman
even think to myself, “Wait, I want to know more about that topic, but
you’re zooming on before you contextualize your information at all.”
This is something like reading an essay that relies too much on
quotations. Readers get the feeling that they’re moving from one quotation to the next without ever quite getting to hear the real point
of what the author wants to say, never getting any time to form an
opinion about the claims. In fact, this often makes it sound as if the
author has almost no authority at all. You may have been annoyed by
paragraphs like this before:
Addressing this issue, David M. Potter comments, “Whether
Seward meant this literally or not, it was in fact a singularly accurate forecast for territorial Kansas” (199). Of course,
Potter’s view is contested, even though he claims, “Soon, the
Missourians began to perceive the advantages of operating
without publicity” (200). Interestingly, “The election was
bound to be irregular in any case” (201).
Wait—huh? This author feels like Uncle Barry to me: grabbing right
and left for topics (or quotes) in an effort to sound authoritative.
The Fix is to return to each quotation and decide why it’s there and
then massage it in accordingly. If you just want to use a quote to cite
a fact, then consider paraphrasing or summarizing the source material
(which I find is usually harder than it sounds but is usually worth it
for the smoothness my paragraph gains). But if you quoted because
you want to draw attention to the source’s particular phrasing, or if
you want to respond to something you agree with or disagree with in
the source, then consider taking the time to surround each quotation
with guidance to your readers about what you want them to think
about that quote.
In the following passage, I think Jessica demonstrates a balance
between source and analysis well. Notice that she only uses a single
quotation, even though she surely could have chosen more. But instead, Jessica relies on her instincts and remains the primary voice of
authority in the passage:
Robin Toner’s article, “Feminist Pitch by a Democrat named
Obama,” was written a week after the video became public
and is partially a response to it. She writes, “The Obama campaign is, in some ways, subtly marketing its candidate as a
post-feminist man, a generation beyond the gender conflicts
Annoying Ways People Use Sources
249
of the boomers.” Subtly is the key word. Obama is a passive
character throughout the video, never directly addressing the
camera. Rather, he is shown indirectly through speeches, intimate conversations with supporters and candid interaction
with family. This creates a sense of intimacy, which in turn
creates a feeling of trust.
Toner’s response to the Obama video is like a diving board that Jessica
bounces off of before she gets to the really interesting stuff: the pool
(her own observations). A bunch of diving boards lined up without a
pool (tons of quotes with no analysis) wouldn’t please anyone—except
maybe Uncle Barry.
Am I in the Right Movie?
Am I in the Right Movie?
failing to integrate a quotaWhen reading drafts of my writing,
tion into the grammar of the
this is a common experience: I start to
preceding sentence
read a sentence that seems interesting
and normal, with everything going just the way I expect it to. But then
the unexpected happens: a quotation blurts itself into the sentence in
a way that doesn’t fit with the grammar that built up to quotation. It
feels like sitting in a movie theater, everything going as expected, when
suddenly the opening credits start for a movie I didn’t plan to see. Here
are two examples of what I’m talking about. Read them out loud, and
you’ll see how suddenly wrong they feel.
1. Therefore, the author warns that a zombie’s vision “are no different than those of a normal human” (Brooks 6).
2. Sheila Anne Barry advises that “Have you ever wondered what
it’s like to walk on a tightrope—many feet up in the air?” (50)
In the first example, the quoter’s build-up to the quotation uses a singular subject—a zombie’s vision—which, when paired with the quotation, is annoyingly matched with the plural verb are. It would be much
less jolting to write, “a zombie’s vision is,” which makes the subject
and verb agree. In the second example, the quoter builds up to the
quotation with a third-person, declarative independent clause: Sheila
Anne Barry advises. But then the quotation switches into second person—you—and unexpectedly asks a question—completely different
from the expectation that was built up by the first part of the sentence.
250
Kyle D. Stedman
The Fix is usually easy: you read your essay out loud to someone else, and if you stumble as you enter a quotation, there’s probably something you can adjust in your lead-in sentence to make
the two fit together well. Maybe you’ll need to choose a different
subject to make it fit with the quote’s verb (reader instead of readers; each instead of all), or maybe you’ll have to scrap what you first
wrote and start over. On occasion you’ll even feel the need to transparently modify the quotation by adding an [s] to one of its verbs,
always being certain to use square brackets to show that you adjusted
something in the quotation. Maybe you’ll even find a way to quote a
shorter part of the quotation and squeeze it into the context of a sentence that is mostly your own, a trick that can have a positive effect
on readers, who like smooth water slides more than they like bumpy
slip-and-slides. Jennifer does this well in the following sentence, for
example:
In Crash, no character was allowed to “escape his own hypocrisy” (Muller), and the film itself emphasized that the
reason there is so much racial tension among strangers is
because of the personal issues one cannot deal with alone.
She saw a phrase that she liked in Muller’s article, so she found a way to
work it in smoothly, without the need for a major break in her thought.
Let’s put ourselves in Jennifer’s shoes for a moment: it’s possible that
she started drafting this sentence using the plural subject characters,
writing “In Crash, no characters were allowed. . . .” But then, imagine
she looked back at the quote from Muller and saw that it said “escape
his own hypocrisy,” which was a clue that she had to change the first
part of her sentence to match the singular construction of the quote.
I Can’t Find the Stupid Link:
I Can’t Find the Stupid Link
no connection between the
You’ve been in this situation: you’re on first letter of a parenthetical
a website that seems like it might be citation and the first letter of
interesting and you want to learn more a works cited entry
about it. But the home page doesn’t tell
you much, so you look for an “About
Us” or “More Information” or “FAQ” link. But no matter where you
search—Top of page? Bottom? Left menu?—you can’t find the stupid
link. This is usually the fault of web designers, who don’t always take
the time to test their sites as much as they should with actual users.
Annoying Ways People Use Sources
251
The communication failure here is simple: you’re used to finding certain kinds of basic information in the places people usually put it. If
it’s not there, you’re annoyed.
Similarly, a reader might see a citation and have a quick internal
question about it: What journal was this published in? When was it published? Is this an article I could find online to skim myself? This author
has a sexy last name—I wonder what his first name is? Just like when
you look for a link to more information, this reader has a simple, quick
question that he or she expects to answer easily. And the most basic
way for readers to answer those questions (when they’re reading a work
written in APA or MLA style) is (1) to look at the information in the
citation, and (2) skim the references or works cited section alphabetically, looking for the first letter in the citation. There’s an assumption
that the first letter of a citation will be the letter to look for in the list
of works cited.
In short, the following may annoy readers who want to quickly
learn more about the citation:
[Essay Text:] A respected guide on the subject suggests, “If
possible, always take the high ground and hold it” (The Zombie Survival Guide 135).
[Works Cited Page:] Brooks, Max. The Zombie Survival
Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead. New York:
Three Rivers, 2003. Print.
The reader may wonder when The Zombie Survival Guide was published and flip back to the works cited page, but the parenthetical citation sends her straight to the Z’s in the works cited list (because initial
A’s and The’s are ignored when alphabetizing). However, the complete
works cited entry is actually with the B’s (where it belongs).
The Fix is to make sure that the first word of the works cited entry
is the word you use in your in-text citation, every time. If the works
cited entry starts with Brooks, use (Brooks) in the essay text.
Citations not including last names may seem to complicate this
advice, but they all follow the same basic concept. For instance, you
might have:
•• A citation that only lists a title. For instance, your citation
might read (“Gray Wolf General Information”). In this case,
the assumption is that the citation can be found under the G
252
Kyle D. Stedman
section of the works cited page. Leah cites her paraphrase of a
source with no author in the following way, indicating that I
should head to the G’s if I want to learn more about her source:
Alaska is the only refuge that is left for the wolves in the
United States, and once that is gone, they will more than
likely become extinct in this country (“Gray Wolf General
Information”).
••
••
A citation that only lists a page number. Maybe the citation simply says (25). That implies that somewhere in the surrounding text, the essay writer must have made it stupendously
clear what name or title to look up in the works cited list. This
happens a lot, since it’s common to introduce a quotation by
naming the person it came from, in which case it would be
repetitive to name that author again in the citation.
A quotation without a citation at all. This happens when
you cite a work that is both A) from a web page that doesn’t
number the pages or paragraphs and B) is named in the text
surrounding the quotation. Readers will assume that the author is named nearby. Stephanie wisely leaves off any citation
in the example below, where it’s already clear that I should
head to the O’s on the works cited page to find information
about this source, a web page written by Opotow:
To further this point, Opotow notes, “Don’t imagine you’ll
be unscathed by the methods you use. The end may justify
the means. . . . But there’s a price to pay, and the price does
tend to be oneself.”
I Swear I Did Some Research!
Let’s look in depth at this potentially annoying passage from a hypothetical student
paper:
I Swear I Did Some
Research: dropping in a
citation without making it clear what information came from that
source
It’s possible that a multidisciplinary
approach to understanding the universe will open new doors of understanding. If theories from sociology, communication, and
philosophy joined with physics, the possibilities would be
boundless. This would inspire new research, much like in the
Annoying Ways People Use Sources
253
1970s when scientists changed their focus from grand-scale
theories of the universe to the small concerns of quantum physics (Hawking 51).
In at least two ways, this is stellar material. First, the author is actually
voicing a point of view; she sounds knowledgeable, strong. Second,
and more to the point of this chapter, the author includes a citation,
showing that she knows that ethical citation standards ask authors to
cite paraphrases and summaries—not just quotations.
But on the other hand, which of these three sentences, exactly,
came from Hawking’s book? Did Hawking claim that physics experts
should join up with folks in other academic disciplines, or is that the
student writer? In other words, at which point does the author’s point
of view meld into material taken specifically from Hawking?
I recognize that there often aren’t clean answers to a question like
that. What we read and what we know sometimes meld together so
unnoticeably that we don’t know which ideas and pieces of information are “ours” and which aren’t. Discussing “patchwriting,” a term
used to describe writing that blends words and phrases from sources
with words and phrases we came up with ourselves, scholar Rebecca
Moore Howard writes, “When I believe I am not patchwriting, I am
simply doing it so expertly that the seams are no longer visible—or I
am doing it so unwittingly that I cannot cite my sources” (91). In other
words, all the moves we make when writing came from somewhere
else at some point, whether we realize it or not. Yikes. But remember our main purpose here: to not look annoying when using sources.
And most of your instructors aren’t going to say, “I understand that I
couldn’t tell the difference between your ideas and your source’s because we quite naturally patchwrite all the time. That’s fine with me.
Party on!” They’re much more likely to imagine that you plopped in a
few extra citations as a way of defensively saying, “I swear I did some
research! See? Here’s a citation right here! Doesn’t that prove I worked
really hard?”
The Fix: Write the sentences preceding the citation with specific words and phrases that will tell readers what information came from
where. Like this (bolded words are new):
It’s possible that a multidisciplinary approach to understanding the universe will open new doors of understanding. I believe that if theories from sociology, communication, and
254
Kyle D. Stedman
philosophy joined with physics, the possibilities would be
boundless. This would inspire new research, much like the
changes Stephen Hawking describes happening in the
1970s when scientists changed their focus from grand-scale
theories of the universe to the small concerns of quantum
physics (51).
Perhaps these additions could still use some stylistic editing for wordiness and flow, but the source-related job is done: readers know exactly
which claims the essay writer is making and which ones Hawking
made in his book. The last sentence and only the last sentence summarizes the ideas Hawking describes on page 51 of his book.
One warning: you’ll find that scholars in some disciplines (especially in the sciences and social sciences) use citations in the way I just
warned you to avoid. You might see sentences like this one, from page
64 of Glenn Gordon Smith, Ana T. Torres-Ayala, and Allen J. Heindel’s article in the Journal of Distance Education:
Some researchers have suggested “curriculum” as a key element
in the design of web-based courses (Berge, 1998; Driscoll,
1998; Meyen, Tangen, & Lian, 1999; Wiens & Gunter, 1998).
Whoa—that’s a lot of citations. Remember how the writer of my
earlier example cited Stephen Hawking because she summarized his
ideas? Well, a number of essays describing the results of experiments,
like this one, use citations with a different purpose, citing previous
studies whose general conclusions support the study described in this
new paper, like building blocks. It’s like saying to your potentially
skeptical readers, “Look, you might be wondering if I’m a quack. But
I can prove I’m not! See, all these other people published in similar
areas! Are you going to pick fights with all of them too?” You might
have noticed as well that these citations are in APA format, reflecting
the standards of the social sciences journal this passage was published
in. Well, in this kind of context APA’s requirement to cite the year of
a study makes a lot of sense too—after all, the older a study, the less
likely it is to still be relevant.
Conclusion: Use Your Turn Signals
You may have guessed the biggest weakness in an essay like this: what’s
annoying varies from person to person, with some readers happily skim-
Annoying Ways People Use Sources
255
ming past awkward introductions to quotations without a blink, while
others see a paragraph-opening quotation as something to complain
about on Facebook. All I’ve given you here—all I can give you unless
I actually get to know you and your various writing contexts—are the
basics that will apply in a number of academic writing contexts. Think
of these as signals to your readers about your intentions, much as wise
drivers rely on their turn signals to communicate their intentions to
other drivers. In some cases when driving, signaling is an almost artistic
decision, relying on the gut reaction of the driver to interpret what is
best in times when the law doesn’t mandate use one way or the other.
I hope your writing is full of similar signals. Now if I could only convince the guy driving in front of me to use his blinker. . . .
Discussion
1. Because so many of these guidelines depend on the writer’s
purpose, publication space, and audience, it can be difficult
to know when to follow them strictly and when to bend them.
What are some specific writing situations where a writer is justified to bend the standards of how to incorporate sources?
2. Choose one of the annoyances. Then, look through a number
of different pieces of writing from different genres and collect
two examples of writers who followed your chosen guideline
perfectly and two who didn’t. For each source you found, jot a
sentence or two describing the context of that source and why
you think its writer did or did not follow the guideline.
3. Rank the annoyances in order of most annoying to least annoying, pretending that you are a college professor. Now, rank
them from the point of view of a newspaper editor, a popular
blogger, and another college student. What changes did you
make in your rankings?
Works Cited
Barry, Sheila Anne. Tricks & Pranks to Fool Your Friends. New York: Sterling,
1984. Print.
Brooks, Max. The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead. New York: Three Rivers, 2003. Print.
256
Kyle D. Stedman
“Gray Wolf General Information.” Environmental Conservation Online System. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 15 Oct. 2008. Web. 23 Oct. 2008.
Hawking, Stephen. A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes.
New York: Bantam, 1988. Print.
Howard, Rebecca Moore. “The New Abolitionism Comes to Plagiarism.”
Perspectives on Plagiarism and Intellectual Property in a Postmodern World.
Ed. Lisa Buranen and Alice M. Roy. Albany: SUNY P, 1999. 87–95.
Print.
Hunter, Stephen. “‘Crash’: The Collision Of Human Contradictions.” The
Washington Post. The Washington Post Company, 6 May 2005. Web. 21
Feb. 2008.
Muller, Bill. “Crash: LA Tale Confronts, Then Shatters, Stereotypes.” The
Arizona Republic. AZCentral.com, 6 May 2005. Web. 21 Feb. 2008.
Opotow, Susan. “Moral Exclusion and Torture: The Ticking Bomb Scenario
and the Slippery Ethical Slope.” Peace and Conflict Studies 13.4 (2007):
457–61. PsycINFO. Web. 27 Sept. 2008.
Piven, Joshua, and David Borgenicht. The Worst-Case Scenario Survival
Handbook: Work. San Francisco: Chronicle, 2003. Print.
Potter, David M. The Impending Crisis: 1848–1861. Ed. Don E. Fehrenbacher. New York: Harper & Row, 1976. Print.
Smith, Glenn Gordon, Ana T. Torres-Ayala, and Allen J. Heindel. “Disciplinary Differences in E-learning Instructional Design: The Case of
Mathematics.” Journal of Distance Education 22.3 (2008): 63–88. Web.
10 Sept. 2009.
Toner, Robin. “Feminist Pitch by a Democrat Named Obama.” The New
York Times. The New York Times Company, 2 Dec. 2007. Web. 22 Oct.
2008.
Wolpert, Lewis. “Is Cell Science Dangerous?” Journal of Medical Ethics 33.6
(2007): 345–48. Academic Search Premier. Web. 28 Jan. 2009.

Purchase answer to see full
attachment

  
error: Content is protected !!