Quotations, Blockquotes and Citations Help

Okie dokie! -cracks fingers-

Maybe the title of this thread was a tad bit off what I really need help with, but it’s directly related to the <q> and <blockquote> tags and the cite attribute. I know what the <q> and <blockquote> tags are used for and the cite attribute but I need some guidance on how I should cite the following:

Performers / Singers and Song Writers / Composers

If I wanted to use a quote from the song Pure Imagination, sung by Gene Wilder, would I cite the quote as Gene Wilder (the performer / singer) - Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory (film it was featured in) or Anthony Newley & Leslie Bricusse (the composers)? Gene performed it, but Anthony Newley & Leslie Bricusse composed / wrote the song. Who do I cite?

Book Authors / Names

I know this one, I simply cite the book name, right? Or Authors Name - Book Name? Can someone confirm this for me please? But my main problem with this was - How much am I allowed to quote from a book? Is 3 - 5 quotes fine or too many? Each quote being between 2 - 3 sentences.

Also, for both (including magazines and other mediums) where would I link to? For example a film, would I link to the IMDB page for that film? What about a book? Or is citing the name enough?

According to the cite (HTML attribute) Reference page from the SitePoint HTML Reference it states the following:

This attribute takes as its value a URI—the complete path (not a relative path from the quoting page) to the source of the quotation.

Does this mean that I should only ever put a URI in the cite attribute? For both the q element and the blockquote element?

Thanks for any help! Very much appreciated as always! :slight_smile:

Andrew Cooper

Andrew, I’m doing some research into this stuff for my design curriculum site, and I do research for the History Commons that involves source citations, so it’s a subject I’m somewhat conversant with. However, I am not the expert on Web semantics. Tommy, Alex, Rudy, and a number of others can give you more expert commentary. So take it for what it’s worth.

I’m no walking Chicago Style Manual :), but I’d say since the songwriters are the ones who created the song, if you do nothing else, cite them. The performer and the show could well be cited also.

Again, I’m not the citation expert, but I’d put it as title, by author. As far as quoting goes, “fair use” guidelines give you some leeway if you’re quoting for a review or something similar. Your 3-5 quotes of 2-3 sentences apiece sounds acceptable. For both books and movies, it seems to me that linking to the publisher’s page or the official book/movie page would be best. Failing that, if the author or director (producer? movie studio?) has a site, that would be a good fallback link. Linking to IMDB, Amazon, and so forth strikes me as only to be done when you can’t find something more official. And as for absolute vs. relative links, you should always put the complete URI as your citation.

This post has been sitting for a half-hour or so while I washed up the midday dishes, so it’s possible someone else has posted different and perhaps better answers. :slight_smile:

The cite attribute provides a way to specify the URI of an online source that you are quoting. So if the lyrics you are quoting are available (legally!) online, you can provide the URI in the cite attribute.

Since no browser does anything useful with the cite attribute, you can just omit it without having to lose any sleep.

You could use the <cite> element type to refer to the title of the song in this case, e.g., <cite>Pure Imagination</cite>.

Yes, normally the book’s title. The <cite> element type is meant for precisely this sort of thing, and the default rendering is in italics just like the long-standing typographic convention to italicise the titles of books, newspapers, magazines, scientific papers, etc.

Enter ‘fair use’ in your favourite search engine, or contact your solicitor for advice. If you want to be perfectly safe, contact the copyright holder of each work from which you wish to quote, and get their written permission.

The cite attribute can only be a URI, but as I said, it doesn’t do anything useful at this time.

Yes, that is exactly what it means.

Songwriter it is then! Thanks Max!

Shall do!

Cheers again Max. I’m pretty sure I’ll be fine with the quotes I want to use will be within “fair use” :). I’ll try and find any official online Web pages when I use quotes from films and songs too.

Righty! I see! So all that should go in the value for the cite attribute is a URI and if I can’t find one then I can leave it out and it won’t do any harm to anyone! :slight_smile:

Oooh nifty! I didn’t know that existed! That will definitely come in use in the future. Thanks for teaching me something new Tommy! :smiley:

Got it! :tup:

One more thing, is this how I would markup the following blockquote? It doesn’t look quite right!

<blockquote>
                           <p><q>The power of the Web is in its universality.<br />
                                 Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.</q><br />
                              <span class="quotee"><strong>Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director and inventor of the World Wide Web</strong></span></p>
                        </blockquote>

Thanks for the help Max and Tommy. My copy of HTML Mastery should be arriving on Monday so I’ll hopefully get plenty of knowledge from that!

Andrew Cooper

An inline quote within the blockquote? That’s a bit much, isn’t it? :slight_smile:


<blockquote>
	<p>The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.</p>
</blockquote>
<p class="quotee">Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director and inventor of the World Wide Web</p>

No, it doesn’t. You shouldn’t use <q> within the <blockquote>, since the latter already says the whole thing is a quotation. And the citation should probably reside outside the blockquote, since it’s not part of what’s quoted. And what’s with the <strong>?! :eek:

<blockquote>
  <p>The power of the Web is in its universality.
  Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.</p>
</blockquote>
<p><cite>Tim Berners-Lee</cite>, W3C Director and inventor of the World Wide Web</p>

You may want to set a class on the <cite> to remove the italics with CSS. (I don’t really think it’s apposite to use <cite> like this – I’m convinced it was originally intended for titles of publications only – but the HTML 4.01 spec says it’s okay.)

Yes 007, I believe it [W3C] is an abbreviated trademark but theoretically could be an abbreviation (father of acronym) in a loose sense. I was looking from outside of the original block-quote so that is why I wrapped it.

There are various ways but one would be as follows:


<blockquote cite="http://www.w3.org/WAI/">
  <p>
     "The power of the Web is in its universality. Access
     by everyone regardless of disability is an essential
     aspect."
   </p>
   <p>
      &mdash; Tim Berners-Lee, <abbr title=
      "World Wide Web Consortium">W3C</abbr> Director and
      inventor of the World Wide Web
   </p>
</blockquote>

Though that’s using it in a slightly different context.

Using quotation marks inside a blockquote isn’t common – or necessary. The indention, often combined with a reduction in font size, already signals that it is a quotation. See the entry about block quotations in Wikipedia, for instance.

Also, I don’t agree* that the citation should be inside the quotation (it’s not part of it). Strictly speaking, ‘W3C’ is not an abbreviation either, since you can’t get ‘W3C’ by abbreviating (contracting) ‘World Wide Web Consortium’.

*) Although I confess to doing so myself many times in the past.

Indeed. I wanted to find an example of a quote and using a quotee and thought of the quote from Tim Berners-Lee on the W3C WAI Web page and thought it would be coded properly, but it seems like it’s a tad bit on the dodgy side!

This looks like a much cleaner and semantically correct way of marking up a quote with a quotee! Thanks! :slight_smile:

I thought so too, seeing as it’s what everyone seems to say. When I seen this code on the WC3 Accessibility Web page I was thinking :eek::nono::rolleyes: Haha.

Again, I was thinking the same thing for exactly the same reason! Yea, I don’t think the <strong> element should be there either, could they have not just applied the bold formatting to the quotee span class instead? I would have done or if not then used the <b> element.

I think maybe just apply a class to the <p> element for the quotee so it’s <p class=“quotee”> and apply whatever styling. I think the <cite> element was also primarily just intended for the titles of publications, I can always read more on it though if I start losing sleep over it. :lol:

I know what you’re doing here :slight_smile: Thanks for the input xhtmlcoder.

I always used to include quotation marks inside a blockquote but now I won’t do as you’ve enlightened me once again! You’re absolutely right in that indentation, font size / family and colour change…Any noticeable style changes would probably be good enough for someone to realize that it’s a quote and the Web browsers should be implementing the quotation marks, not us! :eek:

So, how about this for a blockquote? Comments, views and feedback please! Hopefully I’ve -got it- right! :smiley:

<blockquote cite="http://www.w3.org/standards/webdesign/accessibility/">
	<p>The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.</p>
</blockquote>
<p class="quotee">&mdash; Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director and inventor of the World Wide Web</p>

Thanks for the help so far guys! Truelly appreciated!

Andrew Cooper

BUMP!

So, how about this for a blockquote? Comments, views and feedback please! Hopefully I’ve got it right! :smiley:

<blockquote cite="http://www.w3.org/standards/webdesign/accessibility/">
    <p>The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.</p>
</blockquote>
<p class="quotee">&mdash; Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director and inventor of the World Wide Web</p>

Anyone else want to post any other variations of posting a blockquote that they use?

Andrew Cooper

Looks right to me.

Yup, looks fine to me too. Except for one thing: the URI you’ve entered in the cite attribute doesn’t work (due to its trailing slash, it seems.) If you’re going to include the cite attribute at all, you should probably make sure it contains a valid URI even if the browsers don’t use it for anything :slight_smile:

Thanks Tommy! :slight_smile:

Cheers Cletus! :slight_smile: And thanks for spotting that URL error too! You’ve just reminded me to always check for URL’s. I usually always include a trailing slash after each URL because of the W3C URL Checker which has always made me include the trailing slash in the past to make a URL valid. So I do it out of a force of habit. I’ll check in future!

Andrew Cooper

It seems to me the cite element is still the more semantically correct. Using something like <p class=“quotee”>…</p> says total kludge to me. :shrug:

I always used to include quotation marks inside a blockquote but now I won’t do as you’ve [See Tommy proxima] enlightened me once again! You’re absolutely right in that indentation, font size / family and colour change…Any noticeable style changes would probably be good enough for someone to realize that it’s a quote and the Web browsers should be implementing the quotation marks, not us! :eek:

But [W3C has this to say:

Note. We recommend that style sheet implementations provide a mechanism for inserting quotation marks before and after a quotation delimited by BLOCKQUOTE in a manner appropriate to the current language context and the degree of nesting of quotations.
See my article, [url=http://gtwebdev.com/workshop/misc/quotes.php]How-to Mark Up Quotes](http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/struct/text.html#edef-BLOCKQUOTE).

This is a tricky one. In my case, I let form define structure.

<blockquote>
  <pre>Half a league, half a league,
  Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
  Rode the six hundred.
"Forward, the Light Brigade!
  "Charge for the guns!" he said:
Into the valley of Death
  Rode the six hundred.</pre>
  <p><cite>—The Charge of the Light Brigade</cite></p>
</blockquote>

or

<h2>The Charge of the Light Brigade
  <cite>Alfred, Lord Tennyson</cite></h2>
<blockquote>
  <pre>Half a league, half a league,
  Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
  Rode the six hundred.
"Forward, the Light Brigade!
  "Charge for the guns!" he said:
Into the valley of Death
  Rode the six hundred.</pre>
</blockquote>

cheers,

gary