Wednesday, April 6, 2011
Thanks to Thomas Cooley Professor Evelyn K. Calogero for tipping me off to this article by her colleague Joe Kimble called "Where Should the Citations Go?" It is published at 89 Michigan Bar Journal 56 (2010). The article reports on the results of a survey asking Michigan lawyers to state their preference between a passage with textual citations and an identical passage with footnote citations. Guess which version won? Based on the survey results, Professor Kimble argues that we should relegate citations to footnotes to aid readability.
You may also want to check out this July 8, 2001 article from the New York Times entitled "Legal Citations on Trial in Innovation v. Tradition" in which legal writing expert Bryan Garner also makes a persuasive case for footnote citations.