Paperpile Adds Support for Legal Reference Types

legal reference types

You asked, we listened. Paperpile is happy to announce that we have added 4 new reference types to our database:

  • Bill
  • Legal case
  • Statute
  • Treaty (International Law)

While the addition of new reference types is theoretically a simple task, the complexities of legal referencing present particular challenges. Most legal scholars will be familiar with this phenomenon (see also: The Bluebook Blues). The dominant abbreviation system employed by most publications is so complex, it warrants nearly 560 pages of explanation. One of our goals is to simplify and streamline the legal referencing process for all types of researchers. To that end, Paperpile has devised our own unique method for processing legal citations, which you can see in action below.

Sample Citation

For this example, we’ll take a look at Carafano v., Inc., also known as the “Star Trek actress case”. In this decision, web-based service providers’ protection against liability was upheld through the use of an online form. The case, which involves a nasty bit of identity theft, is so named for its plaintiff, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine actress Chase Masterson (legal name Christine Carafano).

The case appears in Google Scholar as follows:


When you use our handy import button, it appears instantly in your Paperpile library:


You can see that Paperpile has made proper sense of the court, jurisdiction, and reporter information in the citation’s metadata:


Finally, when you’re ready to use this citation in your Google Doc, Paperpile will process it in APA style (again using correct abbreviation) as follows:


You can currently cite these legal reference types using any of the 8,700+ citation styles in the Paperpile library.

Importing and Next Steps

We currently support direct import of legal reference types from a number of sources, including:

The next step for our development team will be to add support for uniform legal referencing using Bluebook specifications. Have additional suggestions that could help you with your legal research? Let us know in the comments below or on our forum. We aim to become one of the leading reference management solutions for legal scholars, and we need your input to get there!

Paperpile getting better and beta: Announcing first beta tests for Word, Android and iOS

Announcing beta tests for Word, Android and iOS

Many of our users have been waiting for mobile Apps and a Word plugin for quite some time now. Not a day passes by without a friendly reminder in our inbox “Where’s my Paperpile iOS App!”. We’re more than happy to be reminded, because with 2.2 million apps available for download, it’s reassuring to know that people are still waiting and lobbying for just one more.

I’ll keep it short: We’re getting ready for private betas for our Android App, iOS App and our Word plugin for Windows and Mac.

You can sign up here today:

Sing up for private beta for Word

Sing up for private beta for mobile (Android and iOS)

For more details on the beta program and the upcoming new products read on.

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Back-to-School Productivity Habits (Are Not Just for Students)

Dilbert productivity

Ahh, back-to-school. The birds are chirping, the bees are buzzing… oops, that’s springtime. But the two have quite a lot in common. They’re a time for a refresh and a reset. Regardless of where you fall in academia (student, post doc, adjunct, professor), the ubiquitous back-to-school mindset offers a great opportunity to reflect on what you want out of the upcoming year. In turn, an assessment of current productivity habits seems prudent.
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You Can Now Download PDFs Off-Campus with Paperpile’s Library Proxy Integration

University library building

Everyone in academia has experienced the following dilemma. You are researching a topic and finally find an article that contains the information you need. You want to read it but realize that you don’t have access to the PDF from your current location. Suddenly, your research has come to a stand-still unless you can find a way around the missing link.

This bottleneck has a political dimension which leads to heated discussions promoting the open access movement and also defending the publisher’s side.

But in everyday life, it is mostly just a very practical and annoying problem. If you are not on your university campus, you don’t have access to the articles your university has licensed.

Today we are announcing a new feature which lets Paperpile connect to your institution’s network so you can download all PDFs exactly as if you were sitting in the library.

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6 Tips for Writing Your Thesis in Google Docs

The birds are singing, the bees are buzzing, which means it’s officially spring time. This is good news for just about everyone… except those with a looming thesis deadline.

If you’re pursuing a Bachelors, Masters, or PhD, you’re either feeling very good or very not-so-good right about now. For some of you, no words have yet made it onto the page. That’s okay! We’re not here to judge. We’re here to help.

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Google Drive for Researchers: 3 Perspectives from the Paperpile Team


We saved the last spot in our research productivity series for Google Drive. We found it’s harder to generate the enthusiasm about Google Drive for researchers than for the other apps we covered. This is because it forms the basic infrastructure of our cloud workflow. Yes, like any other basic infrastructure, things would break down without it, but who actually thinks much about infrastructure? Andreas, Isabel and Stefan in our team decided to do just that and here’s why we love Google Drive.

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6 Ways to Streamline Communication in Your Research Group Using Slack

Slack - channels not emails

When it first hit the scene back in 2012, Slack took the business world by storm as the fastest growing enterprise app ever. What made it so irresistible? In a nutshell: it’s real-time chat that integrates with all of your channels, making it a verifiable communication hub. The companies that adopt it claim it’s completely transformed their workflow and nearly eliminated email.

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