Notes Style Sheet


NOTE: See also Web Sites in the Citation Style section.

Notes capitalizes "Web" when used as an abbreviated form of World Wide Web—a proper noun. (CMS16, 7.76, states that "Chicago now considers web to be generic when used alone or in combination with other generic terms." CMS17 (Preface), similarly recommends the noncapitalization of "internet." MW11 defines "generic" as "relating to or characteristic of a whole group or class." Notes takes exception to these demotions, arguing that the World Wide Web and the Internet are sui generis, not belonging to groups or classes of similar things, that is, they are not "generic." They, and abbreviated versions and combining forms, are to be capitalized in this journal.

Title of the Resource

  • Follow the form established by the producer of the resource as the official title of the product (check the company or organization Web site when in doubt). Do not use the name given by the resource provider (such as FirstSearch, EBSCOhost, etc.) if different:
    • RILM Abstracts of Music Literature not RILM Music Abstracts (FirstSearch)
  • Maintain the upper/lower cases, spacing, and any other modifications of normal title format established by the company for its product. Sometimes the form used in the banner of a Web site is not identical with the official version found in the body of the text:
    • alibris 
    • not (banner) 
    • Abebooks not (banner) 
    • not BARNES&
  • Follow the capitalization of the site's title as best as can be interpreted.

Roman or Italic?

  • Encyclopedias, dictionaries, and other full-text reference works: use italic whether or not there is a print model:
    • Grove Music Online 
    • Encyclopedia Britannica Online 
    • AccessScience 
    • Music Manuscripts after 1600 (RISM A/II)
  • Citation databases: use italic whether or not there is a print model:
    • RILM Abstracts of Music Literature 
    • RILM 
    • The Music Index Online 
    • DDM-Online 
    • Beethoven Bibliography Database 
    • Web of Science 
    • America: History and Life
  • Online equivalents of print resources: use italic:
    • Ulrich's Periodical Directory 
    • Books in Print
  • Online library catalogs, including union catalogs: use roman:
    • OCLC WorldCat 
    • Melvyl (catalog of the University of California libraries) 
    • Hollis Catalog (Harvard Libraries)
  • Aggregators of full-text articles, digital repositories, portals, etc.: use roman:
    • IIMP or International Index of Music Periodicals (we are interpreting this resource as a full-text rather than citation database) 
    • JSTOR 
    • ProQuest 
    • Academic Search Premier 
    • ARTstor 
    • Public Library of Science
  • Online services (shopping, etc.): use roman:
  • Web sites (that are none of the above): use roman, except for cases when the site has the appearance of a monograph.
  • Web sites—titles of subpages: use quotation marks.
    • Library of Congress [main page] > "Arts & Culture" [subpage] > "The Leonard Bernstein Collection" [sub-subpage]
  • Electronic journals: use italic whether or not there is a print equivalent.
  • Electronic books: use italic whether or not there is a print equivalent.