The academic world has had to contend with a slew of new “acceptable” citation formats in recent years, spanning web pages, ebooks, and (more recently), tweets.
The Modern Language Association (MLA), one of the most commonly used guides for citations in academic papers, has a section describing exactly how to cite tweets in its official handbook, and the American Psychological Association (APA) is also accepting tweets as references.
But students, never fear: you don’t have to manually copy+paste all of the required Twitter info into the bottom of your paper. There’s an app that’ll do it for you.
Dubbed Tweet2Cite, this little website is a simple citation creator that will crank out a perfectly structured citation in either MLA or APA format. All you have to do is enter the tweet’s URL (incidentally, you can find this by clicking “Expand” beneath a tweet and then clicking “Details”).
Here’s an example of the citations that Tweet2Cite gave me from this tweet from the Washington Post:
Digital Trends has the scoop on the latest academic-oriented Twitter tool, and was able to speak to its creator, web developer Ben Hedlund, about his plans for the future:
“My current plans are to add more Tweet citation format options (Wikipedia citation, Chicago Style, etc.), possibly add user account functionality to provide a persistent history for each user of the site, explore ways to make a better UX for mobile users, and to start playing with ways I can display trends that I’m seeing in the data around which tweets tend to be cited.”
This tool could prove very useful to students and academics, especially those who are citing breaking news or real-time events in their papers. And because tweets are only 140 characters, a single paper might need to cite dozens at once…Tweet2Cite just might end up saving a few wrists.