Bluebooking, the bane of a lawyers life and a cleaner life

(cleaned up)

Yes, back in 1976 I got my Bluebook and throughout the three years of law school, it was a regular reference.  Ah, but it continues to be a daily tool–for motions, briefs, and such.  I fear one day I’ll Bluebook a conversation with a relative or friend in everyday conversation.

One of the common questions is how best to quote, be it an appellate decision or a law journal.  Jack Metzler proposes a solution,  In Cleaning Up Quotations, to be published in 18 J. APP. PRAC. & PROCESS.

So it often turns out that the best quotation for a proposition is one in which a judge has quoted some other judge, and there’s a good chance that judge was quoting yet another.The Bluebook dictates how to cite the original source of quoted material, how to indicate that the quotation contains a quotation, and how to show any alterations to the immediate source or the original source. But once the quotation contains a quotation, the Bluebook rules often mean that good quotes quickly acquire a significant amount of citation baggage that makes it difficult to use them without significantly distracting from the author’s point or increasing the author’s work for little substantive gain.

His solution is quite elegant and I hope the Bluebook soon includes his suggestion.

While looking into the article I found The Journal of Appellate Practice & Process is available for a $25.00 a year subscription.  It is advertised as “a professionally edited publication that provides a forum for creative thought and dialogue about the operation of appellate courts and their influence on the development of the law.”  (Note, I get nothing for telling you this.)

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