How to format your references using the World Wide Web citation style

This is a short guide how to format citations and the bibliography in a manuscript for World Wide Web. 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.
EndNoteFind the style here: output styles overview
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
Linke, H.: Physics. Coherent power booster. Science. 299, 841–842 (2003)
A journal article with 2 authors
Xiang, Y., Kobilka, B.K.: Myocyte adrenoceptor signaling pathways. Science. 300, 1530–1532 (2003)
A journal article with 3 authors
Erickson, B., Singh, R., Winters, P.: Synthetic biology: regulating industry uses of new biotechnologies. Science. 333, 1254–1256 (2011)
A journal article with 4 or more authors
Wilson, K.A., McBride, M.F., Bode, M., Possingham, H.P.: Prioritizing global conservation efforts. Nature. 440, 337–340 (2006)

Books and book chapters

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

An authored book
Eggert, H., Kauschke, W.: Structural Bearings. Ernst & Sohn Verlag für Architektur und technische Wissenschaften GmbH & Co. KG, Berlin, Germany (2012)
An edited book
Bloch, A.M.: Nonholonomic Mechanics and Control. Springer, New York, NY (2015)
A chapter in an edited book
Di Mauro, C., Nordvik, J.P.: Decision Support System for Crisis Management Planning. In: Brugnoli, A. (ed.) Dangerous Materials: Control, Risk Prevention and Crisis Management: From New Global Threats to New Global Responses: A Picture of Transition. pp. 57–69. Springer Netherlands, Dordrecht (2010)

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 World Wide Web.

Blog post
O`Callaghan, J.: $10 Million Contest To Build A Real-Life Star Trek Tricorder Nears End,


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: Space Station: Plans to Expand Research Community Do Not Match Available Resources. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC (1994)

Theses and dissertations

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

Doctoral dissertation
Sosa Tzec, O.: Delightful Interactive Systems: A Rhetorical Examination, (2017)

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
Hodara, S.: Art With an Inflated Sense of Itself, (2016)

In-text citations

References should be cited in the text by sequential numbers in square brackets:

This sentence cites one reference [1].
This sentence cites two references [1, 2].
This sentence cites four references [1–4].

About the journal

Full journal titleWorld Wide Web
AbbreviationWorld Wide Web
ISSN (print)1386-145X
ISSN (online)1573-1413
ScopeComputer Networks and Communications
Hardware and Architecture

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