Suppose that a mathematician such as Bugs Bunny answers one of my math questions here on MathOverflow, and then I use the idea in a research paper. How should I acknowledge such a distinguished mathematician in my paper, submitted to a reputable journal and all that?

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    $\begingroup$ This should maybe be asked on meta. $\endgroup$ May 27, 2012 at 2:57
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    $\begingroup$ I would love to see a paper by tweetie-bird in a reputable journal. $\endgroup$
    – KConrad
    May 27, 2012 at 3:07
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    $\begingroup$ @Benjamin: sorry, I wasn't sure where to ask this. @KConrad: tweetie-bird isn't actually my name. $\endgroup$ May 27, 2012 at 3:19
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    $\begingroup$ What? I'm shocked! So maybe the MO users Isomorphism, Turtle, and Physics Monkey aren't using their real names either? $\endgroup$
    – KConrad
    May 27, 2012 at 3:45
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    $\begingroup$ Several fundamental statistical tools are named after "Student," the name signed on the papers that introduced them. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Sealy_Gosset $\endgroup$ May 27, 2012 at 15:21

2 Answers 2


Look right underneath where your question is posted. Click on the "cite" link. It will pop up a text box, from which you can copy citation data for this post in either bibtex or amsrefs format. So you can directly cite the MO thread.


I think it depends how important is the help you have received. If it is a crucial step in your work and without it you were not able to complete the paper, you may want to suggest the helper to be your co-author. But if it is not that important you can send him/her an email and thank him/her and let him/her know that you will acknowledge his/her help at the end of the paper.

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    $\begingroup$ I believe the point is that the helper is not using his or her real name; for instance, the user Bugs Bunny: mathoverflow.net/users/5301/bugs-bunny . $\endgroup$
    – Rob Harron
    May 27, 2012 at 3:41
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    $\begingroup$ That's right. I wondered if this meant that all these people aren't interested in acknowledgment. I hadn't known about meta and still don't know how to use it, but can see I probably should have asked this there. Anyway, thanks. $\endgroup$ May 27, 2012 at 3:47

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