15

Just to add to the chorus: if you quote a dictionary, it is perfectly sufficient to link to the definition - the link itself becomes the author citation. Explicitly citing the dictionary's name would imply that that particular dictionary is somehow to be preferred for this definition, which 99% of the time is not the case. (I have a list of dictionaries ...


14

Do not use this answer as an example of what we can and can't do. We are allowed to quote the OED - they are wrong. I got in contact with OED, and they said essentially: No. We can't use their definitions. Sorry guys. I didn't mention stack exchange or ELU, so we won't suddenly be getting a letter of complaint (I pretended it was wiki answers). Their ...


11

Don't cite Google as a dictionary. Google has licensed two of the dictionaries from Oxford Dictionaries for their search product: The Oxford Dictionary of English The New Oxford American Dictionary These aren't bad dictionaries, mind you. The ODE is a large single-volume dictionary which gives very good coverage of Present-Day English, including many ...


10

I want to disagree with you strenuously. But I can't. That doesn't mean I can't disagree with you mildly. I wholly agree with your discussion about The Ugly. We should strongly discourage quotes, including definitional quotes, that do not give the reader the ability to check out the source. A quote that provides neither the name of the source nor a link to ...


8

Links to external resources are encouraged, but not required. Upvote useful answers. Downvote answers that are not useful. A useful answer is an answer that will help not just the asker but also anyone who might come across the question in a site or Google search. It's fine to improve someone's answer by adding links to useful external resources.


8

Are you sure that you are not misinterpreting this rule? (for the part about giving the exact name of the link as a text) I started seeing your comments about this in my answers. (I think you should have waited for our opinions first.) For example: Adjective to describe someone who is knowledgeable, resolute, and calm Why would I write the exact name of ...


8

The help text at How to reference material written by others is common to all sites. Here’s Math.SE’s version for comparison — it still has the Hemingway quote. That means that it’s a site-wide norm and expected of all posters on every Stack Exchange site. It’s certainly no more difficult to reference a dictionary with its name than it is to create a link ...


8

Oxford (OED) is the most complete source I've seen online. It's subscription-only though, unless you are on campus at a university or something. It goes a little deeper than Etymonline, in that you can see cited examples of the earliest uses of a word. Harper's site is perfectly good for most uses, though. If you just want to learn the origins, even ...


8

Letting everyone decide for themselves what is and is not a copyright violation is just a horrible, horrible idea. Copyright law isn't a matter of opinion. We need clear policy on what we can and cannot quote. And we need to be able to flag possible copyright violations to be reviewed by people who actually know about copyright. While I am not a lawyer, I ...


8

I'm not a lawyer (either), but I think Frank's comment is potentially misleading. None of us can say exactly what OED would accept as "fair use" (or which if any courts in which countries would uphold that position). So what Frank means is that he thinks OED wouldn't consider citing a definition here on ELU to be "fair use" (or perhaps he just thinks that's ...


7

As my flagging of a comment instigated @sumelic question, I'll share my thought. Questions on pronunciation are quite interesting, particularly for non-natives as myself, as resources are very sparse outside what's in dictionnaries. ELU could help in that and fill a real need, even though natives might not realize it. About dialects and sharing personnal ...


6

There are two excellent reasons for providing a source: To give credit where credit is due. You have an ethical obligation to your source, no matter that you are paraphrasing or quoting from memory. Moreover, in many situations you have a legal obligation to your source. For instance, people who post content from ELU or any other SE site are required by the ...


5

There's the blog. You could get a couple people to write contrasting viewpoints in a topic and post it as an article on the blog. Also, 'meta' tags like 'discussion' on the main site are not allowed. Finally, please stop using the phrase "over-moderated". We are not over-moderating. We are doing our jobs, which includes removing discussion in comments. ...


5

There's certainly no comprehensive dictionary of abbreviations, as any individual, company, or even fandom can easily have its own abbreviations on top of any standard ones. Wikipedia is probably your best bet for a somewhat complete list, but this will still be missing a lot of more specific abbreviations. For example, as of right now, DM is missing the ...


4

Meta posts and votes on them define policy, in that (insofar as Stack Exchange allows) the community decides how it should operate. Some aspects of ELU are mandated by the company; one such is the attribution policy. In the absence of anything better, then the footnote on this answer with its upvotes is part of site policy. However, I’ll state it ...


3

I am simply a vehicle for getting some enlightening but ephemeral comments into an answer. This is all thanks to the incomparable Edwin. Actually, it's far from trivial to decide between the definite article the and an indefinite article a/an. For example: 'A/the boomslang is certainly not a snake one would want to be bitten by.' There is a 100+ ...


3

Downvotes are for poor answers so while some postings may also need to be downvoted I don't think downvoting is appropriate for missing citations. Commenting gives the best hope of fixing the answer, but there's no guarantee. In the meantime we're hosting content that's essentially stolen; this is not the academic way. Editing to add attribution sounds ...


3

Since I am especially interested in EL&U questions that involve the historical development and alteration of word meanings, or the first occurrence of a word or phrase, providing source information is crucial to the practical value of my answers. A bit of advice I received (some time ago) in a comment from Hugo about the usefulness to others of linking ...


2

Those are my answers and my edits. I had copied information from OED2 without written permission, which I thought would be OK under a 'fair-use' type policy, however after reading this https://stackexchange.com/legal Section 3. Para.1 (goes on a lot longer than this snippet) I realised that SE demands that I license all content that I add to this site to SE....


2

If the question is specifically asking about dialect differences, then I think these kinds of answers are acceptable. (They aren't for pretty much all the other kinds of questions.) Answers that cite other sources are even better and should be upvoted more of course.


1

What I think you are looking for is a number of examples of a target word in a sentence or paragraph (most dictionaries will give at least one sentence in its definition). The OED is great (arguably the best) for definitions of words, with nuance provided by finely differentiated subdefinitions. Also, a number of context sentences are given to show it's ...


1

I'd say that if you've got access to the full OED then that's a good place to start. No other source has (nor probably ever will have) that level of acknowledged expertise (as opposed to unaccredited sources like Urban Dictionary, or those like TheFreeDictionary that effectively "scrape" other dictionaries). If you want to get a better handle on how the way ...


1

It is nice to see that even though the rule now is that "moderators are instructed to delete on sight without further warning any content that is not properly attributed", practice shows that editing extra text is still an option, as in this ELU question. The moderator's comment suggests this is a one-of show of leniency... I am waiting for this delete-on-...


1

Though not online, books abound, such as http://www.amazon.com/The-Greek-Latin-Roots-English/dp/1442233273/ref=dp_ob_title_bk.


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