I have what may be a rather dumb question. I’m trying to understand short titles. The spec says, in discussing
variable- renders the text contents of a variable. Attribute value must be one of the standard variables. May be accompanied by the
formattribute to select the “long” (default) or “short” form of a variable (e.g. the full or short title). If the “short” form is selected but unavailable, the “long” form is rendered instead.
And under variables,
short/abbreviated form of “title” (also accessible through the “short” form of the “title” variable)
However, if one implements that behaviour, at least naively, then this test fails:
"container-title": "my container title", "id": "ITEM-1", "shortTitle": "something", "type": "manuscript"
So it looks as if citeproc-js is using
shortTitle as an input field, at least in JSON.
One possibility would be that for whatever reason
shortTitle in json input, in which case one could simply remap
title-short on input and be done. However, I’m doubtful about this. Googling throws up some old questions that suggest that something more is going on here (my guess is that it’s supposed to set
title-short only after
title has been rendered at least once, but really that’s a guess). I can’t find
shortTitle referred to in the CSL spec.
I guess I have two questions: First, what’s happening: what is the intended behavior here (and where is it documented)? Second, if there is some undocumented behavior involving
shortTitle, should a standards-compliant processor implement it, or should it be regarded as a
citeproc-js oddity? In practical terms I suspect that depends on whether it’s behavior that styles “in the wild” rely on significantly (I understand “standards-compliant” pragmatically rather than religiously).