Have any postings to stackexchange been cited in scholarly publications?

If one does that, should one just name the author, the subject line, the date of posting, and the URL?


2 Answers 2


Though this has been posted in the comments, it deserves to be more prominently featured: We have a built-in feature to suggest citation formats.

  1. Click on the share button on the bottom of a post in Main (it doesn't work on Meta posts). Like so: enter image description here
  2. Notice that on the bottom left of the box there is a cite link. Click on it and you'd see enter image description here In the above shown dialog box, you can copy the "Example citation" as it is and paste it into the document you are writing, or if you use the bibliographic systems BibTeX or amsrefs to produce citation information for your LaTeX document, you can copy the associated version of citation information from the code box below. For systems like EndNote you will have to either enter the information manually following the example given, or use a converter that imports the BibTeX code into the format you desire. Google is your friend for the last.
  • $\begingroup$ On one hand, the share button URL contains a 'q' for questions and an 'a' for answers. On the other hand, the cite button URL contains a 'q' for both questions and answers. Is this a bug? If it is on purpose, why the difference? $\endgroup$
    – Qmechanic
    Commented Apr 22, 2023 at 12:49
  • $\begingroup$ @Qmechanic: I didn't develop the cite code. You should ask this as a new question. Probably on MetaMO. $\endgroup$ Commented Apr 24, 2023 at 12:29

I think the discussion on MO is perhaps the best place to look. In particular, that thread led to a 'cite' button appearing on each MO post, providing a sample citation, BibTex, and amsrefs.

For example, on this thread, which looks like:

enter image description here

the 'cite' link produces the following for BibTeX:

enter image description here

and the following for amsrefs:

enter image description here

Between the sample citations and the bib/ams refs, I can't think of what else you would want. I suspect that this hasn't been added in on MSE because we aren't research-focused.

  • 3
    $\begingroup$ It is enabled on MSE, see here. Click share, then cite (on main, not on meta). In fact, Martin already linked to this post in the comments to the question. $\endgroup$
    – user53153
    Commented Jan 16, 2013 at 23:17
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ BTW, I think this should be added to the FAQ. Or RAQ, as the case may be... $\endgroup$
    – user53153
    Commented Jan 16, 2013 at 23:46
  • $\begingroup$ 5PM: I never knew that - Thanks. The things you learn. $\endgroup$
    – davidlowryduda Mod
    Commented Jan 17, 2013 at 2:35
  • $\begingroup$ @5PM That is a pretty useful one! $\endgroup$
    – user17762
    Commented Jan 17, 2013 at 6:14
  • $\begingroup$ I thought of editing the broken meta.MO link in your post, but it's not clear if the answer adds any value here at all, since it was posted under mistaken assumption that cite is not enabled here. Willie Wong already gave a correct answer. So, maybe just delete this one? $\endgroup$
    – user147263
    Commented Jan 27, 2015 at 23:57

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