Social media

If you paraphrase or quote information from social media, provide an intext citation (author and date) and a reference list entry.

General format

Author (year, month day). Title [format]. Retrieved from http://www...


  • Include either the author's last name and initials or the corporate author name.
  • Provide any social media identity information in square brackets after the name (see Twitter examples below).


  • Give the year, month and day for items that have a specific date, otherwise provide just the year.
  • If the date is not known, use n.d. (for no date) in round brackets, e.g. (n.d.). If the date is unknown but can be approximated use “ca.” (for circa) followed by the approximated year in square brackets, e.g. [ca. 2017]. If you use either n.d. or ca, you will need to also include the date you retrieved the information (see Christchurch City Council example below).


  • Put the name of the page or the caption of the post as the title. If there is no caption or title on the post, use the first few words of the post.
  • Do not put the title in italics unless it is a stand alone item like a report.
  • Put the format after the title in square brackets, e.g. [Facebook status update], [Tweet]


  • Provide a URL that goes as directly as possible to the content (click the Facebook post date to access its direct URL)

Facebook examples

Christchurch City Council. (n.d.). About Christchurch City Council [Facebook page]. Retrieved March 5th, 2017, from

New Zealand Red Cross. (2017, March 16). More than 20 million people in Nigeria [Facebook status update]. Retrieved from

Ministry of Education. (2017, March 16). Canterbury's brand new Lemonwood Grove School [Facebook status update]. Retrieved from

Twitter examples

Trump, D. J. [realDonaldTrump]. (2017, March 7). I am working on a new system where there will be competition in the drug industry [Tweet]. Retrieved from

Ministry of Health [minhealthnz]. (2017, April 3). Typhoid [Tweet]. Retrieved from

More information