Word Plugin: failing to correctly sort edited multiple citations

(I have copied this comment of mine from http://forums.zotero.org/discussion/2251/ooo-citation-removereorder-items-from-multiple-sources/#Item_9, as I think this describes faulty behaviour, rather than a feature request)

Originally I thought that multiple citations were never being sorted correctly. I have investigated this problem further and Zotero DOES sort multiple citations if they are entered as a new citation.

However, if a single citation is changed to a multiple, or more references are added to an existing multiple citation, the additions are NOT sorted.

I am using Zotero 1.0.3, Word plugin 1.0b3 and APA style

(out of interest, how can I tell which version of the Word plugin I am using? I just reinstalled it to make sure I had the latest, but there must be an easier way?)
  • [I have made the same comment to the discussion at http://forums.zotero.org/discussion/2251/ooo-citation-removereorder-items-from-multiple-sources/#Item_9]

    I absolutely agree that the automatic sort function is important. But I also want to emphasize the significance of the ability to arrange and rearrange the order. Furthermore, at least I constantly add or delete items from citations. At the moment I have to redo the citation since I am not able to rearrange the items (the same problem occurs when I want the citation to be sorted).
  • edited April 23, 2008
    I created two tickets that I think should cover both issues.

    First a ticket for the issue with alphabetization:

    Second a new feature for toggling alphabetization off:
  • sorry, I got confused and I am not sure whether we are still talking about the same thing. I was referring to the in-text citation - e.g. (Collins 1998; Adam 1934). I am missing the ability to rearrange the order of these items when I press "mutiple sources". I am not talking about the full bibliography at the end of the paper (or paragraph). Maybe this clarification is unnecessary - I just got confused...
  • Jodler, you already have the ability to manually sort your intext citations. Just uncheck the "keep sources sorted" check box above the multiple sources box and your citations will be generated in the order in which you entered them.
  • that's very interesting! Unfortunately, I wasn't able to find the check box. I did the following: Click Insert Citation in Word, click "multiple sources" in the bottom left corner... there is, however, no option "keep sources sorted". Can somebody help me??
    I use a Windows computer with Microsoft Word and just reinstalled the Word plugin to make sure that I have the most recent version.

  • The keep sources sorted checkbox is there when initially entering a multiple citation. But it is not present when editing an existing multiple citation, or converting a single into a multiple..
  • It would be even nicer (and more intuitive) if we just could rearrange the order within a multiple sources citation. Now it is set in stone according to the order in which you entered them (if you switch alphabetization off) and you have to delete and re-add stuff if you happen to need to change the order.
  • I mean exactly the same thing as mark. I do this all the time and the ability to rearrange the order within a multiple sources in-text citation without dropping and re-adding would be extremely helpful.
    Unfortunatly, I have not found the option Tjowens and tonyc2001 are talking about. After opening a new word document and adding a new citation which I turn into a multiple source citation, I can not see the option.
  • @jodler: what version of zotero and the word plugin are you using?

    Just to be clear: I only see the option to sort the citation when I create a new citation as multiple. If I edit it either way (either from single to multiple, or adding to an existing multiple), then the option isn't there.
  • I use Zotero 1.0.3 and Word Plugin 1.0b3 (Word 2007).
    I cant find the option. My approach is the following: Click Insert Citation from the plugin in Word which opens the dialog to with a list of all my collection on the left side and all my items on the right side. On the bottom of this dialog are a couple of buttoms. I click on the bottom ""Multiple sources" which extends the dialog on the right side adding a list of the items I want to have in the same citation. This list is empty until I add items. I canot find the option about sorting anywhere in this dialog regardless what I do.

    thanks for your help.
  • Jodler: It sounds like you have the most recent version of the plugin. After you select the "multiple sources" button you should see the "keep sorted" checkbox above the multiple sources box that appears on the right side.

    I only see the option to sort the citation when I create a new citation as multiple.
    this is a known issue. One of the tickets mentioned in this thread should resolve it.

    It would be even nicer (and more intuitive) if we just could rearrange the order within a multiple sources citation.
    agreed, the other ticket mentioned in this thread should address this one.
  • I've just come across this issue in my use of Zotero and agree that it would be best if we could rearrange the order of multiple citations. It also seems that Zotero should arrange in-text citations in accordance with the citation style that is selected for the document. That it, in-text citations should be automatically sorted either alphabetically (for something like APA) or chronologically depending upon what is specified for the style.
  • Has there been any progress on this issue? I have the same problem as Jodler. I reinstalled Zotero and the Word plug in for Windows just to make sure - but still have no checkbox option to sort even when creating a citation for the first time. It looks like part of the edit window is missing somehow.
  • The priority on the ticket was switched from minor to major. With any luck this should be resolved with the final 1.5 release.
  • edited July 3, 2009
    >> I only see the option to sort the citation when I create a new citation as multiple.
    >this is a known issue. One of the tickets mentioned in this thread should resolve it.

    they say that the problem has been fixed, but it does not seem the case, at least for me.
    i'm using zotero 2.0 with MS word plugin.
    edited multiple citations are NOT reordered.

    i think this is a major problem.
    any advice?
  • edited July 6, 2009

    The ticket mentioned by carloreve refers to alphabetical sorting. However, in many journals (at leat in the physical sciences) numerical references are used, such as:

    1. Smith, First reference, 2008.
    2. Keller, Second one, 2009.
    3. Adam, The third, 2005.

    The order is that found in the text, for example:

    In this work we follow Smith (1) who revised the work by Keller (2) and Adam (3). It was assumed (1,3) that ...

    Now if I want to edit the last citation to include 2, it should now read (1-3) (required by many journal styles) but I end up with (1,3,2), and there is no way to change this behavior other than reentering the whole multiple citation (or, I did not find any ...). The request, thus, is to allow for more flexible ordering of multiple citations, including changing the sorting when editing the citation. By the way, a resizable multiple citation window would be fine.

    (Edited) I am using Zotero 2.0b5, word plugin 1.0b4, word 2003, ff 3.5 on Win XP x64 SP2


  • Hello,
    using Zotero 2.0b5 and a MS Word Plugin I find the same problem as fmolina and carloreve:

    automatic reordering of references does not happen for multiple entries, neither in alphabetical, nor in numerical format.

    any suggestion would be highly appreciated.

  • Searching the forums will turn up other threads on this issue, including this one, which suggests that this might be an issue that crops up in citation-number styles that do not provide for the sorting of citations before they are rendered:


    This would seem to be the starting point for identifying the problem, so ... what style are you folks using?
  • Hi,

    I am using the Americal Chemical Society style, updated 6/4/2009

  • Hmm. That style does sort citations. Looks to me like this may indeed be a plugin bug (off my knowledge map, unfortunately).
  • I am using APA style, so another style that does not use numbers but that requires that in text multiple citations are in alphabetical order.

    this bug makes zotero use very annoying during writing.

    i hope we will find a solution soon.

  • I just came across this thread, and I cannot find a "keep citations ordered" checkbox anywhere, on OSX 10.5.8, firefox 3.6, zotero 2.0.
    And if it were possible to manually change the order, that would still be much appreciated.
  • migugg - if the box is there depends on the style, I believe.
  • ah, didn't get this. But why is this so? I tried with Harvard and Chicago, and in both of them, I would want to be able to sort.
  • I had a lot of trouble with sorting multiple citations in Vancouver style, a numeric citation style. I am using Zotero 2.0.3 and WinWord plugin 3.0a3.

    As pointed out by tonyc2001 in the original post, sorting works occasionally but not when the citations are edited, so I was getting things like "(21,22,7)".
    Looking at the field codes in Word, the correctly sorted citations started with

    { ADDIN ZOTERO_ITEM {"sort":true,"citationItems"...

    whereas the unsorted lacked the "sort":true command even though they had the "keep citations ordered" box checked. I managed to correct the sorting by un-checking the box, closing and reopening the "Edit citation" window and then re-checking it. As you can imagine it took ages (but much less than re-entering them all in order).

    Would it be possible to change the plugin to include the "sort":true command by default in all citation field codes, whether they are single/multiple items, edited or not?
  • Multitple in-text citations are being sorted incorrectly, i.e. the authors are sorted alphabetically but the years of publications for each author are sorted arbitrarily. For instance (Coase, 1937; Williamson, 1975, 1985, 1979). I use APA style; the checkbox 'keep sources sorted' is checked; and the version of the Word plugin is 3.0a4.
  • grmpf - I hate this bug.
    Unless you're in a hurry, I'd just wait for Zotero 2.1 (currently in beta) where this should be fixed.

    For what it's worth, this is probably because the item types are different (assuming you're citing Williamson's '75 and '85 books and the '79 article), but that doesn't make it right, it's just a likely explanation.
  • Any idea, when alpha version 2.1. will be available? Anyhow, I would be great if the sort order could be defined trough a set of configurable parameters - is that also in the pipeline?
  • cmoesli - the sort order is actually defined in Zotero's APA style- it's supposed to order first by author's last name, then by date. It's just not always working (hence "bug"). Other orders can be defined as well, so that already exists.

    I presume you don't mean 2.1 alpha (which, like the letter, precedes/preceded beta) but the final version - no there is no eta - but 2.1b is pretty stable already. A bunch of people are using it - you should just make sure to keep better back-ups if you do.
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