What is the best way to point authors to a certain CSL style?
We have some recommendations for publishers and journal editors who want to link to a CSL style in their “Instructions to Authors”:
First, you will have to decide whether to self-host a CSL style, or link to a copy of the style in the official style repository (if you created your own style, see the instructions for submitting styles to our repository). Using a style from the repository has several advantages: styles in the repository are subject to our quality control and are actively maintained, kept under version control, and can easily be improved by you as well as by the user community.
Second, if you choose to link to a style from the repository, we recommend linking to the copy in the Zotero Style Repository, which mirrors all styles in our GitHub repository (e.g. the APA style at https://raw.github.com/citation-style-language/styles/master/apa.csl is also available at www.zotero.org/styles/apa). Linking to a style in the Zotero Style Repository provides for a better user experience: users of Zotero for Firefox are automatically prompted to install the style when clicking a style link, and the style automatically downloads for other users (in contrast, web browsers typically present users with the raw XML when visiting the GitHub link, after which users have to manually download the style to their computer).
Third, make sure to include “CSL” or “Citation Style Language” in the link name. Some journals link to a CSL style as “style for Zotero”, but CSL styles can be used with several other reference manager tools, such as Mendeley and Papers. Instead, use e.g. “CSL style (Zotero, Mendeley, Papers, etc.)”.
Can I support the CSL project?
Yes! You can help CSL in the following ways:
- Financially. The CSL project is not (yet) registered as a non-profit organization and lacks the infrastructure to accept donations. However, consider making a donation to the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media (the developers of Zotero) as a token of appreciation for their continuing contributions to CSL, such as hosting CitationStyles.org and the Zotero Style Repository.
- Mention us. If you are a developer and support CSL in your software, please drop us a line and acknowledge the use of CSL in your software (please use the unabbreviated “Citation Style Language”, since “CSL” is a common acronym). With this you’ll boost our morale and provide us with the incentive to continue development of CSL. Also, if you distribute CSL styles from our style repository, make sure to comply to their Creative Commons BY-SA license.
- Become a CSL style author. Learn CSL and help us by creating new CSL styles and improving existing ones. Follow e.g. the Zotero forums to find out which styles are being requested, and help users with their CSL questions.
- Get involved in CSL development. Take part in CSL development by reporting missing features, looking up formatting requirements in style guides, suggesting ways to implement new features, writing new CSL documentation, or working on the CSL processors.