Writing:External links and references (state executive officials)

From Ballotpedia
Jump to: navigation, search
This page is a content-and-style guide about how to write an "external links" and "references" sections in a state executive official article.
How to write about
state executives
Starting an article (stub)
Blank Example Article
InfoboxIntro sentence
ImagesSee also section
External links and references
General offices:
Intro sentence
Feature - elected or appointed
OfficeholdersSee also section
External links and references
State offices:
InfoboxIntro sentence
Current officeholderAuthority
Historical officeholders
Contact informationSee also section
External links and references
InfoboxIntro sentence
BiographyPolitical career
Elections (Issue positions)
Campaign contributions
See also section
External links and references
Succession boxes
SEO news desk
The project

Below are some guidelines and recommendations for helping writers decide if a link to an outside source should be included only as an external link (see below) or also as a reference footnote. In particular, if you are adding information that is based on information you found in one of the authoritative sources which the guidelines have recommended be placed under the section titled==External links==, and you believe it is information that a reader might find surprising or unusual, you might consider linking to that specific information as a footnote at the end of that sentence as well as using an external link to that information source. For example, a link to a specific campaign advertisement as a footnote, and a link to that person's Youtube channel storing the full collection of his/her campaign advertisements as an external link.

For more on references, click here.

External links

How to add an external link

Links to include

Below are a variety of links that you should always add to state executive official articles. Also, each article should include the template {{submit a link}}. This template will allow readers to submit related links to Ballotpedia staff.

Generic offices (Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General...)

State executive offices (Governor of Alabama, Minnesota Treasurer...)


  • The official state webpage about the position or department.
  • The subpage of the state official website that profiles the officeholder.
  • The officeholder's blog, if there is one.
  • The officeholder's Facebook page, if there is one.
  • The officeholder's Twitter account, if there is one.
  • Template:SEOLinks for major office holders, Template:LegisLinks for those with fewer resources available.

Candidate profiles

Suggest a link
  • The official campaign website of the candidate
  • The candidate's biography from Project Vote Smart
  • The candidate's Facebook campaign page, if there is one
  • The candidate's Twitter campaign account, if there is one
  • Template:SEOLinks for those with many resources available (often previous office holders), Template:LegisLinks for others.


References, also known as "citations" or "footnotes," should be added to properly cite added material and direct readers to where the fact or statement originated.

To link to a website outside Ballotpedia:

  • Add ref tags around your source (e.g. <ref>YOUR SOURCE</ref>). A small link like this one[1] will appear next to your text, taking you to the reference section at the bottom of the page.
    • YOUR SOURCE represents your link and article info. The info should be written in the following format: <ref>[www.URLHERE.com ''Newspaper/Website name'', "Article title," Month Day, Year]</ref>


From the state office profile for Iowa Treasurer of State:

==Current officeholder==
The current state treasurer is [[Michael L. Fitzgerald]].<ref>[http://www.treasurer.state.ia.us/ ''Iowa State 
Treasurer'', "Homepage," accessed March 22, 2015]</ref>
  • Make sure there is a "reference" section at the bottom of the page. That is where the reference links will appear.



See also

Suggest a link

Cite error: <ref> tags exist, but no <references/> tag was found