In recent years I have received ever more frequent requests to add the "citation of Internet sources" to the MLA Format and MLA Style pages on my Writing Help Central Website.
Accordingly, the following is my summary of the key points for including MLA citations in a paper, as per the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers
Please take note that the material below is based on my understanding of the MLA standards that I consulted when I wrote this. If you have a complex citation situation, please check the MLA Handbook For Writers of Research Papers.
MLA Citation of Sources On The Internet
Authors using and citing sources on the World Wide Web (i.e. Internet) should observe the following two guidelines:
Documents available via the Internet include articles from periodicals (e.g. newspapers, newsletters, journals, etc.); They may stand on their own (e.g. research papers, government reports , online books, brochures, etc.); or they may be in Web-based format (e.g. Web pages, newsgroups, blogs, etc.).
Following are some key points to note when citing electronic sources in MLA format:
Sample MLA Citations - Internet References
Following are example citations for some of the more common types of references to online sources. (All sources cited are fictitious):
Online Project or Database:
Include: title of project or database, name of project or database, publication info as available such as version number, name of sponsoring organization, etc., date of access, and full URL.
Britannica Online. Vers. O7.3 Apr. 2007. Encyclopedia Britannica. 8 May 2007 ‹http://www.eb.com/›.
The Discovery Channel Online. 2007. Discovery Channel. 28 June 2007 ‹http://dsc.discovery.com›.
Article, Poem, Short Story or Similar Work:
Include: author's name, title of work, followed by the rest of the project or database info as itemized above. If no author is available begin citation with the title in quotes.
Jackson, Maynard. "Living With Fear and Uncertainty". Maclean's Magazine Online. Ed. Stanley Workman. May 2007. Maclean's Magazine. 20 Aug. 2007. ‹http://www.macleans.ca/May2007.art05›.
"Watch Your Step!" Runners World On The Web. July 2007. Runners World Blog. 25 Aug. 2007. ‹http://www.runnersworld.com/blog/Jul07/
Fawcett, Shaun. Writing Success Secrets. 2004. 15 Sept. 2006 ‹http://www.writinghelptools.com/secrets.html›.
Online Government Publication:
Canada. Industry Canada. Developing Your Business Plan. Business Coach Series, August 2007, Canada Business Web site. 25 Oct. 2007 ‹http://bsa.canadabusiness.ca/gol/bsa/site.nsf/en/su07140.html#a3›.
Scholarly Journal Article:
Dalbert, Raymond. "Business Designs for the New Millennium". BusinessEd Monthly Review. 47.4 (1999). 15 pp. 17 Apr. 2006
Newspaper or Newswire Article:
"Fossil Find Challenges Man's Timeline". NY Times Online 10 July 2007. 10 July 2007 ‹http://www.nytimes.com/nytonline/NYTO-Fossil-Challenges-Timeline.html›.
Bowser, John."Storm Paralyzes Transit System". New York Times on the Web 25 June 2007. 28 June 2007 ‹http://www.nytimes.com/
Shoumatoff, Alex. "A Russian Tragedy". Walrus Online 14 May 2006. 16 Sept. 2007 ‹http://www.thewalrus.ca/online/articles/russia-0506.html›.
Online Interview Transcript:
Griffin, Thomas. Interview with Matt Damon. The Gazette. August
2006. 12 Sept. 2007 ‹http://www.montrealgazette.com/entertain/
Bremer, Fred. "Re: Global Climate Change." E-mail to Rachel Heinz.
27 July 2007.
Gravely, S. "Business Letter Writing." Online posting. 12 June
2007. Write Place Web log. 17 Sept. 2007 ‹http://
The above examples are for what I consider to be the most typical types of citations that would be made in the average paper. If you have an Internet source reference situation that is not covered here you'll have to check out the MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers
RFW’s Paper Wizard for MLA and APA is powerful software that automatically formats your MLA and/or APA papers for you. Paper Wizard integrates with Microsoft Word and becomes a part of it. It even has a built-in grammar-speller checker! If your paper is due soon, RFW Paper Wizard will save the day.
RFW Paper Wizard