Writing your research paper starts with finding your sources. When you’re writing a paper on history or the arts, it is likely you’ll be using either MLA style or Chicago/Turabian 17 notes-bibliography style. Typically, articles on psychology or other social sciences will not have a lot of art sources and you will use author-date citation styles such as APA or Chicago/Turabian author-date style. MLA and notes-bibliography styles give you easier ways to create citations for hard-to-define works, like when you want to cite a movie, painting, live performance or podcast.
Citing Multimedia Content
With all the different ways to find multimedia, such as online videos, radio shows, and podcasts, it is important to remember to collect enough data during your preliminary research. This way, you’ll be able to find your source later. Also, you need to make sure your reader can find it. You may even need to indicate the exact time on a video to make your point.
Whether you want to cite a movie, a TV show or any other type of multimedia, you will need to identify these elements:
- Title of work
- Creation date (created, published)
- Name of the producer (movie studio, etc.)
- Location of the source
Gather all other identifying sources together, including directors, actors in a scene you are referencing and type of medium (Blu-ray, online hosting etc.). When you create your notes entry, include data such as the time of the clip; however, in your bibliography entry, you do not need to include as much information.
The first element when you cite a movie can be the title of the movie or the director of the movie. Use whatever works best within the context of your research paper. If you are writing about a director or directors, use the director’s name, for example. But if the title of the movie is more important to your discussion, place that first.
If your subject revolves around early female blues singers, write the title of this movie first:
However, if you’re writing about Canadian film directors, place the director’s name first:
Podcasts and Videos
Incorporate brief references to podcasts and videos into the text of your research paper or create a notes entry only. However, if you decide to cite a podcast or video in your bibliography, include the title, name and date of the episode and the creator of the work. Gather as much information as you can about the work in your preliminary bibliography so you will have what you need for both your notes entry and bibliography entry.
For videos, follow the movie example but add the format you used to watch the video. For example, if you watched it on a DVD or Blu-ray disc, add that information on to the entry.
Focus on the Source
It seems confusing to list so many details while citing multimedia sources. However, with all the different ways a person can watch or access media, it’s important to guide your reader to the place you accessed the source. Movies, for example, may be edited to fit television screens or DVD formats, or streaming media may include extras, such as director’s cuts. Again, since you need your reader to understand and follow your Chicago style format research paper, you need to provide a clear link to the source.