Add "suppress ibid" function to word processor integration

The Word and Libreoffice integrators already have a very useful "suppress author" toggle. My suggestion is that a "suppress ibid" toggle is also added.

The rationale for this suggested improvement is as follows: Sometimes we authors tend to cite other sources than those Zotero supports. This is particularly the case for law, but may also happen in other fields. 99% of the time this is unproblematic. I do my case citations by hand and add them to a separate bibliography, as my style requires.

However, problems can arise in the few instances where a source is cited twice with a non-Zotero source in between. Here is an illustration (I use [] around the Zotero fields, the rest would be plain text in the document):

1. [Denis Abels, Prisoners of the International Community: The Legal Position of Persons Detained at International Criminal Tribunals (Springer 2012)]. See also Case C-97/01 Springer para 45.
2. [ibid.]
The second footnote is inteded to be a reference only to Abel. It should therefore have been written (in OSCOLA) as "Abel (n 1)".

The point of this example is to show that Zotero believes that footnote 3 is an ibid. citation, since it is the same source as the last one that i cited using Zotero. This issue only comes up rarely, because if there is a full footnote in between ibid will not be used. However, in the situations it does come up I am forced to basically rewrite or append an additional footnote to avoid confusion.

A "suppress ibid" toggle would solve this problem. It might also have its use in other situations.

I hope that someone will notice this suggestion and add it to what I guess is an already long wishlist of features. But hopefully it is implemented some day. Thanks in advance!
  • This is probably something that the style should handle rather than having a special button - but where does OSCOLA say that you shouldn't use Ibid. ?
    Just glancing through this guide

    https://www.law.ox.ac.uk/sites/files/oxlaw/oscola_2006.pdf

    they show that both are acceptable. Has there been a change since then? And does the 'no ibid.' rule only apply to cases (might be tricky to do) or to all citations (not that hard) ?
  • Oby
    edited April 14, 2016
    I don't think you quite got my point. Look very closely at the example I provided and read the text afterwords carefully.

    To clarify even more, here is a screenshot showing a similar example (grey shading = Zotero field), with the edit citation window for footnot no. 2 open:
    http://imgur.com/IIPHNjH

    What I am asking for is a way to selectively suppress ibid, just like we can selectively suppress author. I don't think it is possible to do this with just a style.
  • ah OK, sorry, you're right I did misunderstand -

    this'd be one for the developers then

    but a follow up question - what is it that Zotero fails to do that stops you from using it for citing the case ? Is it a bibliography problem, that you need a separate section for 'Cases Cited' and this gets mucked up if you cite cases using Zotero?
  • Oby
    edited April 14, 2016
    For case citations two things are missing: First, proper citation formats (MLZ/Juris-M seems to have that working, though, but I prefer to use the official client). Second, the need for multiple bibliographies - one for each category of sources (case-law - sorted by jurisdiction, literature, statutes, treaties, etc.).

    But even if all this was added it is possible to think of situations where an ibid is inappropriate. For example if I after Craig (2010) in footnote 1 in my latest example write some explanatory text - and not a reference. Or for example mention of a legal principle which is not expressed in a particular source. If I then in the next footnote (no. 2) want to refer to Craig (2010), a simple "ibid" might not be appropriate.

    Here is an illustration: http://imgur.com/OtFPJwx

    (This may seem obscure, and very law-related, but I have also run into this problem in practice in other contexts over the years I have been using Zotero. I just cant think of more concrete examples just now.)

    The suppress ibid issue is really a "papercut" kind of issue. It can be worked around by just writing the text differently, so as to avoid repeat citations with text/non-Zotero citations inbetween. Still, I think it is a feature that should exist, and should therefore be put on the roadmap.
  • I'm not convinced, to be honest. The solution in your primary case would seem to be to just use Zotero for case citations (they work pretty well if you follow the template https://www.zotero.org/groups/oscola_samples/items and they're sorted separately in the bibliography already).

    I don't think ibid. in the 2nd example is problematic.

    The other reasaon is that this is actually a fairly costly change. For one, the whole point of the Word add-on is to be simple. If we start adding more and more options, it's going to affect usability. Perhaps more importantly, adding a "no ibid" option _will_ get misused by people who don't want ibid ever (and thus break things for them if they later do want to switch to an ibid style in ways that are hard for us to troubleshoot).
  • Of course, if Juris-M style case support (including multiple jurisdictions) is implemented, the primary case would be moot. And I see the point of keeping things simple on the word processor plugin change. I even agree that ibid is not too problematic in the second example.

    But imagine a bit more complex scenario. What if we have the following footnotes (OSCOLA style):

    1. Denis Abels, Prisoners of the International Community: The Legal Position of Persons Detained at International Criminal Tribunals (Springer 2012) 250. This statement is repeated on page 365, but the opposite view is taken on page 415.
    2. ibid.
    What is the ibid. really referring to here? Only the first page number in footnote no. 1 in this example would be seen by Zotero. Imagine that the second footnote is a reference to another concept than than which is discussed in the first footnote - but still happens to be found on page 250 of the book in question. This is not communicated well with a simple "ibid.".

    A fix is, obviously, to rewrite the messy first footnote. So this is no pressing issue. And it is also a very narrow example. Perhaps it is indeed not worth it to add the option of suppressing ibid on individual citations.

    But what about for the entire document? Maintaining two different styles for such a small difference seems a bit unnecessary. I have for example not been able to keep the code for "no ibid" OSCOLA up to date, since I was not able to fully understand the OSCOLA csl code after the latest major refactoring.
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