UH Law Library's Blog

July 20, 2010

The New Bluebook – 19th Edition – Changes

Filed under: Bluebook — Tags: — uhlawlibrary @ 3:51 pm

The Nineteenth Edition of The Bluebook, A Uniform System of Citation is out.  Some of the changes between this edition and the last are listed here.

The Bluepages have been considerably overhauled for the 19th Edition. In addition to general expansion and clarification, the Bluepages now include detailed information for citation to Electronic Case Files (ECF) documents. Bluepages table BT2 has also been updated and expanded to include more local citation rules.  NOTE: these rules, which many state and federal courts promulgate, take precedence over Bluebook rules in documents submitted to those courts.

In addition to edits for clarity, concision, and consistency, the 19th Edition contains the following significant changes:

  • Rule 1.5(b) now provides comprehensive guidance on the order of multiple parentheticals in a single citation.
  • Rule 10.4(b) now allows omission of the jurisdiction and court abbreviation of state courts if unambiguously conveyed by the reporter title.
  • Rule 10.6.1(c) now provides guidance on citation to seriatim opinions of the early Supreme Court.
  • Rule 10.8.3 now provides details for citations to audio recordings of court proceedings.
  • Rule 13.4(d) now establishes specific citation formats for Congressional Research Services and Government Accountability Office reports.
  • Rule 14 has been considerably revised to improve citation to administrative agency materials. The rule itself, however, is now shorter as many details on citation to specific agencies have been moved to table T1.2.
  • Rule 16.6 now includes provisions for citation to wire services.
  • Rule 18 has changed considerably, primarily to allow increased citation to Internet sources.
    • Rule 18.2.1(a) now provides guidance allowing citation to authenticated and official Internet sources as well as exact digital scans of print sources as if they were the original print source. These changes in rule 18 allowing citation to official, authenticated, or exact Internet copies of cited materials are also reflected in rules 10, 12, 15, 16, and 17.
    • Guidance for citation to webpage titles of main pages and subheadings has been expanded in rule 18.2.2(b). Rule 18.2.2(a) now states that when no author of an Internet source is clearly announced, the author information should be omitted from the citation, unless there is a clear institutional owner of the domain.
    • Additionally, institutional authors of Internet sources should be abbreviated according to rule 15.1(d).
    • Rule 18.2.2(c) now states that citations to Internet sources should be dated as they appear on the Internet site, using only dates that refer clearly to the material cited. When material is undated, the date of the author’s last visit to the website should be placed in a parenthetical after the URL.
    • Rule 18.2.2(c) now also states that for blogs and other frequently updated websites, citations should include timestamps whenever possible.
    • Rule 18.2.2(h) still encourages the archiving of Internet sources, but does not require the citation to indicate the location of an archival copy.
    • Rules 18.6 and 18.7 now allow for the use of timestamps in citations to audio and video recordings.
    • Rule 18.7.3 now provides citation guidance for podcasts and online recordings.
  • Rule 20 has been expanded to provide clearer guidance and more comprehensive examples.
  • Rule 21 has been updated and now includes improved citations to United Nations materials.
  • Rule 21 also specifies the citation format for the International Criminal Court.

All of the tables have been revised and updated. Table T1 has been subdivided into four sections: T1.1 (Federal Judicial and Legislative Materials), T1.2 (Federal Administrative and Executive Materials), T1.3 (States and the District of Columbia), and T1.4 (Other United States Jurisdictions). Table T1.2 represents a significant expansion in the coverage of administrative agency materials.

Table T2 has incorporated significant organizational and substantive improvements for each existing country, and seven new countries have been added: Belgium, Chile, Colombia, Egypt, Iraq, Pakistan, and South Korea.


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