Q. An article in the Washington Post (“On the Web, Research Work Proves Ephemeral,” by Rick Weiss, November 24, 2003) reports that URLs often become obsolete. It also says that there are lots of errors even in citations to conventional sources. What’s a researcher to do?

Q. Dear Q&A, We are an undergraduate academic library where students access most of the articles they cite from online databases such as EBSCO HOST Academic Search Premier. Our faculty would like to know how you would suggest citing articles from this source, as the URLs on these databases are not persistent. Thank you.

Q. If a website breaks at the end of a line in type where a period occurs, does the period belong at the end of the line or at the beginning of the next line?

Q. Have you established any rules for breaking web addresses at ends of lines? I would be inclined to break at the slash where possible, with no hyphen (keeping the address intact), but what about the “dots”? Example: eic.edu.gov.on.ca/html/dsbmaps.html (I’ve got another one that’s a line and a quarter long!).

Q. Should a sentence that ends with a website address end with a period that is not part of the address? I am concerned that people who are not familiar with how URLs work might have trouble finding a site if they assume that the final period is part of the address. I have the same concern about putting a web address in quotation marks. Have you found any effective way of making sure people will be able to tell website addresses from surrounding punctuation?

Q. An online course I am building has many references to external websites. How should these be presented? I have been told to use both the name of the website and the URL but neither one should be hyperlinked. This sounds a little weird to me. Is there an official “right” way to do this?

Q. I noticed an article about CMOS that referred to this website address without the “www.” See University of Chicago Magazine, August 2003, page 40: “A New Web Site (chicagomanualofstyle.org) . . .” Is this okay?

Q. In a story where the last text provides an URL, website, or email address, should it not have a period at the end? I find sometimes clicking on the URL it does not take one directly to the displayed location if a period follows.

Q. Can you tell me which is preferred—underlining or not—when citing URLs in endnotes?

Q. (cont’d) Thank you! I use MS Word and am looking for a way to turn off the underline.