I'm using BibTeX to cite the references in my LaTeX file. I have one entry (citing an url using the entrytype @misc). The default style is the author-year mode using the apalike style.

This is the entry \cite{url-1}.

The expected output is

This is the entry [url-1].

But, I get the output as

This is the entry [url-1, ].

The BibTeX entry does not have year field. This is

url={some website},

How do I eliminate the extra spacing for the year field. Even if I add an empty field for year like year={}, I still get the same format.

  • BTW: are you getting any warnings from bibtex? See the .blg file? It may be that for apalike year is actually expected, even for misc fields.
    – daleif
    Nov 18, 2014 at 11:38
  • Do you use a citation management package such as natbib?
    – Mico
    Nov 18, 2014 at 11:39
  • @daleif, I am getting warnings about missed year in misc fields
    – kris
    Nov 18, 2014 at 12:47
  • @Mico, I am not using natbib package.
    – kris
    Nov 18, 2014 at 12:47

3 Answers 3


Since the apalike bibliography style is meant to generate authoryear-style citation callouts, the designer of the style file apparently didn't anticipate that there would be entries (of type @misc, say) that do not have a year field.

Here's a simple work-around: Load the natbib package, and use that package's instruction


instead of \cite{url-1}. As you can probably guess, \citeauthor outputs just the author(s), but not the year.

  • I have tried this option. It works fine but it overrides the other citations. All turned into numeric, rather than author-year format.
    – kris
    Nov 19, 2014 at 11:09

You could use biblatex-apa and its online entry type. If there is no year, it adds (n.d.) (no date) after the title, but that can be removed with a small patch if you don't want it.

title ={Edward Lear Home Page},
url = {http://www.nonsenselit.org/Lear/}





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I finally managed to get a solution for this. I used a slightly modified .bst file "apalike-url" instead of "apalike" as mentioned here.

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