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How to Reference Other Sources

Avoid plagiarism by following these steps.

Joel Bradley avatar
Written by Joel Bradley
Updated over a week ago

Applies to: All Stack Overflow for Teams


Plagiarism is posting the work of others with no indication that the words are not your own. Other users on your site will frown on plagiarism, and as a result may downvote or even delete your answer or question.

Reference it right

When you find useful information that can help answer or pose a question, whether from your site or another resource, make sure you do all of the following:

  • Quote only the relevant portion.

  • Make it clear you're quoting a different source.

  • Provide a link to the original page or answer.

  • Provide the name of the original author.

Do not copy the complete text of external sources. Instead, use their words and ideas to support your own. Always give proper credit to the author and site where you found the text, and include a direct link to it.

Read more about writing great Answers.

Reference example

According to the Ernest Hemingway biography on, Hemingway saw combat when he was a teenager. The article says of Hemingway:

"After the United States entered the First World War, he joined a volunteer ambulance unit in the Italian army. Serving at the front, he was wounded, was decorated by the Italian Government, and spent considerable time in hospitals."

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