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Retrieving Newspaper Articles for Law Review Research

This guide explains the resources available at BC Law Library for retrieving newspaper articles needed for law review research.

Confusion with Publication Dates

When you cannot locate the article using the date cited by the author, try searching a newspaper database using the article's title/author information.  The news coverage date for an event may post-date the actual event because of publication delays.

Content Missing from the Electronic Version of a Newspaper

Some content is not included in the electronic version of newspapers.  Some examples of excluded content are: freelance writers' articles in the event the writer will not relinquish rights for the content to be reused in an electronic edition; special editorials or Op-Ed pieces written by non-newspaper staff (again, the newspaper does not have default rights to this content); and classified advertisements.  The Bluebook Rule 16.6 details the citation format for newspaper editiorials.

Born Digital Articles

Some newspapers are moving to electronic editions only, while others have much more content on their websites than in their print editions.  For example, an article may appear in the Washington Post blog and never appear in the print version of the newspaper. Citation to the more stable, print versions of newspapers is only possible when the content being referred to actually appeared in print.  For articles distributed exclusively on the newspaper's website, cite the electronic version in accordance with Bluebook Rule 18.2.2.

The Last Resort

If you've performed a thorough check and you still can't verify the newspaper article citation, it may be time to contact the law review author who cited this document and request clarification from him/her.

News Wire Stories

At times, you may think your citation is to a newspaper article, but it is actually an article distributed by a wire service. Do not assume the citation is to a newspaper article, and check Bluebook rule 16.6(d) rule re wire services.

Searching News Wires

At times, you may want to verify a citation to a wire service such as AP or PR Newswire. Access to wire services for news coverage is available from the following vendors:

  • Bloomberg Law - provides access to national and international news wire services.  Also includes the extensive Bloomberg News network.
  • Nexis Uni - pulls content from both U.S. and foreign newswires
  • Westlaw - provides access to national and global wire services in English and other languages.