How to format your references using the Digital Journalism citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for Digital Journalism. For a complete guide how to prepare your manuscript refer to the journal's instructions to authors.

Using reference management software

Typically you don't format your citations and bibliography by hand. The easiest way is to use a reference manager:

PaperpileThe citation style is built in and you can choose it in Settings > Citation Style or Paperpile > Citation Style in Google Docs.
EndNoteDownload the output style file
Mendeley, Zotero, Papers, and othersThe style is either built in or you can download a CSL file that is supported by most references management programs.
BibTeXBibTeX syles are usually part of a LaTeX template. Check the instructions to authors if the publisher offers a LaTeX template for this journal.

Journal articles

Those examples are references to articles in scholarly journals and how they are supposed to appear in your bibliography.

Not all journals organize their published articles in volumes and issues, so these fields are optional. Some electronic journals do not provide a page range, but instead list an article identifier. In a case like this it's safe to use the article identifier instead of the page range.

A journal article with 1 author
Nathan, Carl. 2004. “Antibiotics at the Crossroads.” Nature 431 (7011): 899–902.
A journal article with 2 authors
Longo, Valter D., and Caleb E. Finch. 2003. “Evolutionary Medicine: From Dwarf Model Systems to Healthy Centenarians?” Science (New York, N.Y.) 299 (5611): 1342–1346.
A journal article with 3 authors
Acquisti, Claudia, Jürgen Kleffe, and Sinéad Collins. 2007. “Oxygen Content of Transmembrane Proteins over Macroevolutionary Time Scales.” Nature 445 (7123): 47–52.
A journal article with 11 or more authors
Falkowski, Paul G., Miriam E. Katz, Andrew H. Knoll, Antonietta Quigg, John A. Raven, Oscar Schofield, and F. J. R. Taylor. 2004. “The Evolution of Modern Eukaryotic Phytoplankton.” Science (New York, N.Y.) 305 (5682): 354–360.

Books and book chapters

Here are examples of references for authored and edited books as well as book chapters.

An authored book
André, Étienne, and Romain Soulat. 2013. The Inverse Method. Hoboken, NJ USA: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
An edited book
Kikuzawa, Kihachiro. 2011. Ecology of Leaf Longevity. Edited by Martin J. Lechowicz. Ecological Research Monographs. Tokyo: Springer.
A chapter in an edited book
Jain, Vartika, and Surendra K. Verma. 2012. “Pharmacological Investigations and Toxicity Studies.” In Pharmacology of Bombax Ceiba Linn, edited by Surendra K. Verma, 51–67. SpringerBriefs in Pharmacology and Toxicology. Berlin, Heidelberg: Springer.

Web sites

Sometimes references to web sites should appear directly in the text rather than in the bibliography. Refer to the Instructions to authors for Digital Journalism.

Blog post
Carpineti, Alfredo. 2016. “There Might Be A Huge Salty Ocean Beneath Pluto’s Heart.” IFLScience. IFLScience.


This example shows the general structure used for government reports, technical reports, and scientific reports. If you can't locate the report number then it might be better to cite the report as a book. For reports it is usually not individual people that are credited as authors, but a governmental department or agency like "U. S. Food and Drug Administration" or "National Cancer Institute".

Government report
Government Accountability Office. 1990. Excess and Surplus Personal Property Transfer Program. T-GGD-90-49. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

Theses and dissertations

Theses including Ph.D. dissertations, Master's theses or Bachelor theses follow the basic format outlined below.

Doctoral dissertation
Prima, Megan B. 2012. “Waiting for Lefty: Adversity and the American Dream.” Doctoral dissertation, Long Beach, CA: California State University, Long Beach.

News paper articles

Unlike scholarly journals, news papers do not usually have a volume and issue number. Instead, the full date and page number is required for a correct reference.

New York Times article
Williams, John. 2016. “Classic Words, Fresh Looks.” New York Times, July 31.

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by name and year in parentheses:

This sentence cites one reference (Nathan 2004).
This sentence cites two references (Nathan 2004; Longo and Finch 2003).

Here are examples of in-text citations with multiple authors:

  • Two authors: (Longo and Finch 2003)
  • Three authors: (Acquisti, Kleffe, and Collins 2007)
  • 4 or more authors: (Falkowski et al. 2004)

About the journal

Full journal titleDigital Journalism
ISSN (print)2167-0811
ISSN (online)2167-082X

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