Because it’s really hard to properly cite things

That’s an answer to the question “why are there errors in citation, even by academics who should know better?”  Or at least that’s my answer.

Anyway, this came up for me this morning after skimming throw the Inside Higher Ed article “Cite Check,” something that might be useful reading in a variety of classes I teach.  The basic point of the piece is that research of citation practices in fields like management science, health, other sciences, etc., indicates that there’s lots of errors in terms of quoting/paraphrasing wrong, bad references, and the like.  There’s a link in the article to the academic study that might be worth looking at.

In my own scholarship, I obviously try my best, but there are lots of things that are just really hard to cite properly.  And in my teaching, I ask my students to do the same, knowing that perfection in these matters is elusive.

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