Also...how did you work out that the main point related to academic writing styles when this had been mentioned. I would also like to draw your attention to the fact that there are several methods for referencing academic texts, such as the stamford method.
[QUOTE=Endymion]I'm not doubting the fact it was a quote or not. I'm just saying that you don't use speech marks when writing a quote; in any context, whether it be newspaper, online, essay. It's not a quote if you use speech marks, as it's speech, obviously. Find me an example if you think otherwise. If you don't include a source (reference), then I as far as I'm aware, I don't think there is any standard protocol for the position of the full stop. If there is, then perhaps someone can elucidate some evidence.
Ugh.ok. That point you were making wasn't clear. And to be honest i have bigger fish to fry than whether i used a speech mark or a quote mark.
Does anyone actually want to know the answer to this, or are you all happy to swipe at each other?
In British English, when you are quoting someone within a longer sentence, the final punctuation comes outside of the speech marks. In American English, it is tucked inside them regardless. For instance:
Tarquin remarked that he was "proud to be British".
Even though their punctuation makes little sense, George Bush claims he is "proud to be American."
However, if you are writing in British English, the following other rules apply:
If your quotation stands on its own (ie you are quoting an entire sentence without adding 'he said' or similar), your full stop should go inside the speech marks:
"Your disco needs you."
If you're continuing the sentence after the quote, stick a comma after the speech marks:
I looked at his so-called "genitals", and walked away.
And, of course, the use of a question mark or exclamation mark depends on which part of the sentence it relates to. When the question is posed by the speaker, or the exclamation relates to him, it goes within the speech marks:
Freddie thought, "why does my toe feel funny?"
"To the observatory! I have an idea!" bellowed the actor in the crap action movie.
But when it relates to the rest of the sentence, it goes outside of the speech marks:
Why couldn't he just tell her to "bugger off"?
Apparently those are speech marks though.
Thank you everyone (though especially Trousers) for clearing that up.
It's interesting to see that a question of grammar can evoke such passion in people.