Why when using <ref></ref>tags on one source hide the reference.

+2 votes
McIntyre-916, Working on getting ref tags in, but one item under <references>completely disappears if <ref> ITEM</ref> is used. Currently moved back under sources heading, as it won't show under <references>.
WikiTree profile: Morris McIntyre
in Policy and Style by Jeanette McIntyre G2G5 (5.2k points)
We can't see that profile in edit mode to see if you've missed a tag or something like that. That is a frequent cause of disappearing sources. Do you use the enhanced editing? With the color and font changes, you can instantly see that something is formatted incorrectly if you do.
Thank-you, I don't know why, but perhaps something wasn't quite right, Must have been a tag wrong, but suspected it might have had to do with the image inserted at that point. It's fixed now.
Thank-you all!

4 Answers

+9 votes
Best answer
The other answers are sort of correct, but are correct because of WikiTree's style guide statement that specifies that the <references /> (all lower case and with a space before the slash) tag is to be placed immediately under the == Sources == line.

The technically based reason why your citation(s) did not display has to do with the function of the <references /> tag, which is to display all the citations enclosed by <ref …</ref> tags at the location where the <references /> tag is placed.  The page is compiled in what is called a "top-down" fashion, applying codes as they occur.  The result is that, as the page is processed, all the citations enclosed within <ref> … </ref> tags are accumulated in a buffer, then when the <references /> tag is reached, the content of that buffer is added to the page.  Note that if any <ref> … </ref> tags are below the <references /> tag then they will never be displayed because they have not yet been processed at the time the <references /> tag is processed.
by Gaile Connolly G2G6 Pilot (870k points)
selected by Dennis Wheeler
+4 votes

<references />

Is the right way , with nothing in between.

If you are using <ref></ref> tags they belong in the bio.

Type info, add the first ref tag, insert record/citation, add last ref tag ( or use the auto C button at the top of the bio section).

Go to preview and you will see them appear under sources.
by Marion Poole G2G Astronaut (1.1m points)
edited by Marion Poole
I just double-checked the Help pages and the tag should be

<references />

It may still work the other way, I don't know. There is a space between references and the / symbol.
Lucy, it won't work the way Marion typed it, but not because of the missing space.  That space is specified in the syntax, however if it is incorrectly missing, that is something that browsers forgive (probably all, but there could be one or more that don't) and it will still work just fine and dandy.  It does definitely belong there to be correct, however.

What will not work is the upper case R.  To the computer, References and references are two completely different things, so there is no such tag named References, therefore it will simply be displayed on the view page exactly as it appears on the edit page or, possibly depending on the browser, it may simply not be displayed at all, since it is constructed as a tag, rather than content.
Sorry Gaile, thought I had corrected that.
+3 votes

As Marion has said .. references between ref tags belong in the Biography, or under a == Research Notes == header (which goes above == Sources ==

If you place ref tags under the == Sources == header you are going to generate multiple database errors (found under suggestions on your dropdowns) — which will frustrate Data Doctors who correct such errors as they cannot access them on that profile.

Currently the profile for https://www.wikitree.com/wiki/McIntyre-916 is generating error # 863 Missing <references /> tag.

<references /> needs to be placed directly beneath == Sources == with nothing between them (which Marion already said).

by Melanie Paul G2G6 Pilot (280k points)
Placing the <ref> …</ref> tags (enclosing citations between the start and end tag of each) below the == Sources == line will not cause a database error.  Placing it below the <references /> tag is what causes the error.  It is the style guide that specifies that the <references /> tag is to be placed immediately below the == Sources == header, although there is no technical reason why that would be necessary.  

In fact, my personal preference is to place all the citations immediately below the == Sources == header, with the <references /> tag below the last one and it was only recently that change was made in the style guide that causes about 1,000 profiles I have done to be out of compliance with the guide.  I now place all the citations at the start of the profile, which there is no prohibition about doing.  This way, I only use the <ref /> tag in the bio, making it much more readable on the edit page.
Current DBE is because there is (or was when I checked earlier) no <references /> at all.
+3 votes

I know you've gotten some great answers to this, but I wanted to share the WikiTree YouTube video on this subject.  It might help.


by Karen Hoy G2G6 Mach 3 (36.9k points)

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