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The editors provide authoritative guidance to reasonable questions on subjects covered by The Bluebook. The most useful answers are gathered here as Blue Tips, classified by subject. These tips are searchable and linked to the Bluebook content they address. Send your questions to editor@legalbluebook.com. If our answer is useful to Bluebookers generally, it may be formulated into a new tip, below.

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Cases

"Mem.", 6/24/2010 (Related Section: R10.6.1)

As stated in rule 10.6.1(b), a decision is designated “(mem.)” only when it is issued without opinion. Citations to written dissents from or concurrences with decisions issued without an opinion should not include the “(mem.)” designation.

Citation of Opinions by Magistrate Judges, 6/22/2010 (Related Section: R10)

Magistrate judges’ opinions should be cited to a reporter if published (rule 10) and as unreported opinions if they are not (rule 10.8.1). To indicate the relationship between a magistrate judge’s opinion and another opinion adopting it, use the explanatory phrase “adopted by” under rule 10.7.1.

Department/District for Trial Court Cases, 11/19/2010 (Related Section: R10.4)

When citing published state trial court opinions, the department or district may be omitted unless that information is of particular relevance.

Citation Structure

Citations in Quoting/Citing Parentheticals, 6/15/2010 (Related Section: R1.6)

When citing a source for the purposes of a “citing” or “quoting” parenthetical under rule 1.6(c) or rule 10.6.2, the secondary source should be cited as if it were being cited anew. If, however, the provision cited or quoted has changed since the publication of the source doing the citing or quoting, cite to the version the original cites.

International Materials

Citations to U.N. Human Rights Bodies, 7/26/2010 (Related Section: R21.7)

Citations to U.N. Human Rights Bodies should be formulated as follows: [Committee name], [document title], [para. __], U.N. Doc. CEDAW/C/34/D/8/2005 (date), at [web site].

In some instances the Committee name and document title would be combined: [Report of Committee name] or [Committee name report], [para. __], U.N. Doc. CEDAW/C/34/D/8/2005 (date), at [web site].

When cases are part of the document title, the citation form becomes: [Committee name], [case name], [Comm. No. ____], [para. __], U.N. Doc. _____ (date), at [web site].

When the Committee name is part of the citation, then: [Case Name], [para.__], U.N. Doc. CEDAW/C/34/D/8/2005 (date), at [web site]. Note that the Comm. No. should not be included in the very last citation sample when part of the U.N. Doc. number. Note too that the “2005” part of the U.N. Doc. number  in the very last citation sample above should be omitted if the date parenthetical repeats the year information. The web site information should be included if desired.

Quotations

Internal Quotation Marks, 8/13/2010 (Related Section: R5.2)

When quoting a first-order source that quotes another, second-order source, you may or may not need to include internal quotation marks. No internal quotation marks are necessary if the portion of the first-order material you are quoting does not contain any quotation marks (i.e., if you are quoting only an interior portion of the second-order quotation). If the portion of the first-order material you are quoting is coextensive with the second-order quotation (so that you would otherwise place an internal quotation mark right next to both external quotation marks), omit both internal quotation marks and insert an "internal quotation marks omitted" parenthetical.

There are two circumstances in which you omit a single internal quotation mark: (i) if the first-order material you are quoting begins with the beginning of, but ends before the end of, the second-order quotation (so that you would otherwise have only one internal quotation mark, which would be right next to the opening external quotation mark), and (ii) if the first-order material ends with the end of, but begins after the beginning of, the second-order quotation (so that you would otherwise have only one internal quotation mark, which would be right next to the closing external quotation mark). In these cases, use an "internal quotation mark omitted" parenthetical. In all other cases, include all internal quotation marks.

The Internet, Electronic Media, and Other Nonprint Resources

Main Page Titles, 11/21/2010 (Related Section: R18.2.2)

Under rule 18.2.2(b)(i), main page titles are abbreviated in accordance with table T13. Where a main page title is better characterized as an institutional author, however, abbreviate in accordance with rule 15.1(d).