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Thanks for helping me out with my citation question.  Here is the "hit".
Original question:
We have a class researching parenting right now.  Several students are looking at 
online forums where single-parents/teenage parents etc. are writing in about their 
experiences.  The teacher asked how they should cite that information.  My quick 
answer is to cite it as they would a web page.  But that does not really seem 
adequate to me.   I am not having any luck finding this specific situation 
addressed in my MLA Handbook.  Could you point me in the right direction?  
Here are two websites that should answer your question. I also saw a webpage that 
says that there is no "official" way to cite these according to the MLA. 

If you look at NoodleBib Express , they have
a format for web forums.  Where it's from, I'm not certain, but it's
there.  I generally consider that to be a pretty thorough source of
citation information.

Click on MLA, then More resources 
I think you could use one of the non print resources.

I have a couple of classes researching right now and I have found
nothing in MLA Handbook however, the following online sources both
have examples for blogs that I think would be acceptable. 

Based on MLA format, here are the examples I used for students at my school in our 
Research Paper Handbook  They need to include username, real name if known, article 
title. the fact that it is an online posting, the date it was posted, the list or 
service it was on, when they accessed it, and the path or url to get to the forum 
or newsgroup.  The exact post designation is preferred if available but not 
strictly required. Oh, and the examples for discussion lists/forums and 
weblogs/podcasts are all from actual posts while the email and Chat/IM examples are 
made up.
In the MLA Handbook, check section 5.9 or look at their webpage: 
For what it's worth, EasyBib (at would format your posting in this 
Henry, Jacqueline. "TARGET: Gen: Citing Online Discussion Groups/Forums." LM_NET. 
06 Nov. 2007. 06 Nov. 2007 <>.
I find it useful that they have formats for so many different kinds of sources.

What about citing it as a personal communication?  That is how I cite emails.
In the the edition of the MLA Handbook, online forums are listed in electronic 
resources with this format: author's name and the title of the document in quotes, 
as given in the subject line, followed by the description Online Posting, the date 
when the materials was posted, name of the forum, if known, the date of access, and 
in angle brackets, the online address of the list's internet site or the e-mail 
address of the list's moderator.  The example given is: 
Chu, Michael.  "Belline Style." Online posting.  20 May 2002. Opera-L 21 May 2002 
Hope this helps.

I've found this site useful. 
Online Writing Lab at Purdue University. I use that for everything that I cite!


"The Librarian, whose job is to heal ignorance, to keep life safe for poetry and to 
put knowledge smack dab in the middle of the American way."

From The Philadelphia Inquirer, 9-20-03
Jacquie Henry, MLS
Ruben A. Cirillo High School (GHS)
Gananda Central School District
3195 Wiedrick Road
P.O. Box 609
Macedon, NY  14502
315-986-3521 x 3144 
Library Page: 

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