“Walk, Talk, Cook, Eat: A Guide to Using Sources” was terrible and should be forgotten forever. “Annoying Ways People Use Sources” was actually helpful and not too painful to read, unlike the former. With a range of humor, Kyle D. Stedman explains what are the most common mistakes and how to fix them. Let’s not forget that some of the names are pretty hilarious. “Am I in the Right Movie?” or “Dating Spiderman” are two of my favorite. However, the whole metaphor at the beginning had me ‘hooked’ to a point. Bad writers are like bad drivers, an accident waiting to happen. But then when it is further explained, it feels that the metaphor becomes really unbalanced. “You don’t know the generally accepted practices of using sources (especially in academic writing) in the U.S. Or, You know the guidelines but don’t care.” and “They don’t know that the generally accepted practice of highway driving in the U.S. is to move to the right if an upcoming car wants to pass. Or, They know the guidelines but don’t care.” don’t match! (2 -4) These two lists are not comparable. Driving is a much more common area of knowledge. Ask any professional or municipal driver about citing sources in any format. Unless they had a stint in high school or higher education where they were just really into writing research papers with the scholarliest of sources. Needless to say, that’s extremely unlikely.
The was one annoyance that helped me the most. The “I Swear I Did the Research!”, while broken into multiple parts, one example is the most helpful. “Some researchers have suggested “curriculum” as a key element in the design of web-based courses (Berge, 1998; Driscoll, 1998; Meyen, Tangen, & Lian, 1999; Wiens & Gunter, 1998).” has a multitude of sources. Unit 3 has the requirement of at least six sources. Only so much can be said without being repeated. What if multiple sources have the same or generally similar information? Is it plagiarism if I cite one but not the other? In the article, the fix basically says to cut out older sources, as their information might not be as relevant anymore. That has to be one of the dumbest fixes I’ve ever heard. That’s almost saying “Well this looks cluttered, just knock some of this off here and there. Now it’s good.” How about I just put a bandage on my gaping wound or covering my wall with duct tape after a bus crashes through it. That doesn’t help! If my sources cover the same or oh so similar topics, I’m citing them in list form right after my quotation.