Citation by abbreviation

How can I cite a source not by the author's surname but by abbreviation?

It is extremally relevant for dictionaries, which are commonly cited this way, for example, DEWOS for Dialektologisches und etymologisches W├Ârterbuch der ostjakischen Sprache.
  • Do you want to cite all items by some sort of label, such as SmDi96 for Smith & Dellert (1996), or do you just want to refer to a short title or other abbreviation for specific item types (like dictionary entries)?
  • I want to cite in this way only some specific items, mostly dictionaries. For other items, I use a normal citation like (Smith 1999: 23).
  • edited October 8, 2019
    Zotero has limited options for customizing that, but you can use the abbreviation as the author (assuming you also want it to appear in the bibliography, which will help the reader to locate it), and then also include editors (but not authors or they will appear with the abbreviation). Note that this will still include the year with the abbreviation (which may be helpful).

    (The only way to truly customize this would be to customize your own style, so that you use, for example, one of the fields like 'short title' for the abbreviation then use conditional logic so that if there is a short title you display that instead of the authors. But for practical reasons that doesn't seem optimal.)

    Of course you could just do this manually then add the reference either after the first use of the abbreviation: DEWOS (Editors YYYY), or by manually adding it to the bibliography within the edit bibliography window.
  • This would be controlled by the citation style, as well as the item data provided. For example, most citation styles already will use the short title of an item if no author is provided.

    What style are you using? Do these dictionary entries have an author in your Zotero library?
  • (What I meant was that you couldn't easily opt on a per-item basis for using short title instead of author, if both author and short title were included as metadata for the item. Omitting the author allows some options.)
  • bwiernik, technically I use a style elaborated by my colleague. It is in all details similar to APA, excepting automatic round brackets (it is a little bit more convenient for our work). Yes, in my Zotero library, dictionaries have also an author.

    djross3, thank you! It looks like omitting the author is the simplest way...
  • edited October 9, 2019
    As you are using a custom style, I would recommend adjusting the author-short macro to instead use variable="title" form="short" for type="entry-dictionary"

    If you post your style to hastebin.com and give a link to it here, I can give more specific guidance
  • edited October 9, 2019
    As you are using a custom style, I would recommend adjusting the author-short macro to instead use variable="title" form="short" for type="entry-dictionary"
    Ah, yes, that's a good point, if you want this consistently for specific item type(s).

    (Just clarifying in order to not be misleading with my replies above.)
  • My style is here: https://hastebin.com/opacagebud.xml

    I will be incredibly grateful for your help!
  • While this feature dies not exist in the official Zotero, the Zotero fork Juris-M has a abbreviation filter that provides exactly the feature you ask for.
    @fbennett @dstillman Is there any chance the abbreviation filter or a similar feature can be brought (back) to Zotero?
  • While Abbreviation Filter is indeed useful, it is not really what the original poster is asking for in this case.
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