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MLA Style (8th Ed.) 2017

Core Elements Format

The MLA 8th ed. does not provide rules for citing specific types of resources.  They provide a universal set of guidelines for any type of material based based on the core elements. The explosion of new and emerging social media platforms create many citation challenges.

With the rapid increase in online art, fan art, cat memes, digital remixing and Photoshop battles it is tempting to assume works found online only need a URL for a citation. This is not the case! It is your responsibility as a scholar to find the originating source and give them credit for their time and creative effort. 

Email

Format:
Author Last Name, First Name or Initial. “Title - subject line of e-mail.” Name of
receiver, Date sent.

Example:
Shearer, K. “Public Poetry Reading Aug 1.” J. Gattrell, 7 July 2013.

In-text: (Shearer)

NOTE "When you document an e-mail message, use its subject as the title.  The subject is enclosed in quotation marks and its capitalization standardized." (MLA Handbook, 8th edition, page 29)

Tweet or Social media post

Format:
Author Last Name, First Name or Initial (if available). “Title.” Internet Site. Publisher (if applicable), Publication Date, Location URL.

Example:
@persiankiwi. "We have report of large street battles in east & west of Tehran now - #Iranelection." Twitter, 23 June 2009, 11:15 a.m., twitter.com/persiankiwi/status/2298106072.

In-text: (@persiankiwi. "We have report of large street battles in east & west of Tehran now - #Iranelection.)

NOTE In the main text of the essay, a tweet is cited in its entirety, including hash tags. Pseudonyms and online user names are generally given like regular author names. (MLA Handbook, 8th edition, page 24)

Memes, Gifs & Reposts

FORMAT

Author Last Name, First Name or Initial (if available). “Title.” Social Media Site.
Publisher (if applicable), Publication Date, Location URL. 

EXAMPLE

Gif of "Meryl Streep and Jennifer Lopez responding to Patricia Arquette's Oscar speech 2015", Tumblr.comtotheskyirise.tumblr.com/post/111844835665/when-you-totally-agree-with-something.

In Text: (Gif M. Streep)

NOTE A description of the resource you are citing can precede the title 'Gif of' in the above example. Also do your best to find and link to the original source of the item, particularly if it is a remix or fan-art to give credit to the correct creators. Since online sources often disappear a description of the image can be used in place of Author or Title, as show in this example.