# biblatex-apa: Author's first name is repeated in brackets

I am using the biblatex-apa package together with the latest biber and biblatex versions (... I think). The issue is, that sometimes the author's first name, or its abbreviation, is repeated in square brackets after the author name.

I think the reason is some sort of conflict, because it doesn't happen, when there is only a single citation of one article in the file.

Let me give you a minimal example. (It is not so minimal, but short enough, I think)

\documentclass{article}

\usepackage[american]{babel}
\usepackage{csquotes}
\usepackage[
backend=biber,
style=apa,
apamaxprtauth=7,
doi=true,
isbn=false,
url=false
]{biblatex}
\DeclareLanguageMapping{american}{american-apa}

\begin{filecontents}{\jobname.bib}
author = {Andersson, G. and Str\"{o}mgren, T.},
doi = {10.1097/01.PSY.0000031577.42041.F8},
isbn = {0000031577},
journal = {Psychosomatic Medicine},
pages = {810--816},
title = {{Randomized controlled trial of Internet-based cognitive behavior therapy for distress associated with tinnitus}},
url = {http://www.psychosomaticmedicine.org/content/64/5/810.short},
volume = {64},
year = {2002}
}
author = {Andersson, Gerhard and Carlbring, Per},
doi = {10.1080/16506070310014466},
journal = {Cognitive Behaviour Therapy},
number = {3},
pages = {97--99},
title = {{Internet and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy: New opportunities for treatment and assessment}},
url = {http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/16506070302315},
volume = {32},
year = {2003}
}
\end{filecontents}

\begin{document}

\printbibliography

\end{document}


Compiling it, gives me

What can I do to get rid of the brackets?

• You might wanna clarify the title of this question, since it doesn't seem to deal with umlauts. – Sverre May 18 '13 at 12:37
• Of course, you're right. I stumbled over the issue in articles with Umlauts in the author names, and thought, it was related to them. Thank you! – janoliver May 18 '13 at 12:49

This is a result of the disambiguation performed by biblatex for authoryear type styles - to avoid mistaking people with the same surname (but different initals or names), it dynamically adds initials or full names (as set by options). The apa style adapts that to add square brackets around those. For details see section 4.11.4.1 of the biblatex manual.

To turn this behaviour off completely use the uniquename=false option.

\usepackage[
backend=biber,
style=apa,
apamaxprtauth=7,
doi=true,
isbn=false,
uniquename=false,
url=false
]{biblatex}


A better way would probably be to make sure that repeated citations of the exact same author are done in the same way so that biblatex only disambiguates when the authors are actually different (and not just when you happened to not write out the full name in exactly the same way). Using your MWE, if we replace the G. by Gerhard no brackets are added:

\documentclass{article}

\usepackage[american]{babel}
\usepackage{csquotes}
\usepackage[
backend=biber,
style=apa,
apamaxprtauth=7,
doi=true,
isbn=false,
url=false
]{biblatex}
\DeclareLanguageMapping{american}{american-apa}

\begin{filecontents}{\jobname.bib}
author = {Andersson, Gerhard and Str\"{o}mgren, T.},
doi = {10.1097/01.PSY.0000031577.42041.F8},
isbn = {0000031577},
journal = {Psychosomatic Medicine},
pages = {810--816},
title = {{Randomized controlled trial of Internet-based cognitive behavior therapy for distress associated with tinnitus}},
url = {http://www.psychosomaticmedicine.org/content/64/5/810.short},
volume = {64},
year = {2002}
}
author = {Andersson, Gerhard and Carlbring, Per},
doi = {10.1080/16506070310014466},
journal = {Cognitive Behaviour Therapy},
number = {3},
pages = {97--99},
title = {{Internet and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy: New opportunities for treatment and assessment}},
url = {http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/16506070302315},
volume = {32},
year = {2003}
}
\end{filecontents}

• Also, I'd like to add that turning uniquename off is not APA compliant. It's better to make sure your .bib knows which authors are actually the same by using initials or full names. – PLK May 18 '13 at 15:08