IraLIS recommends the following rules:

1. Always sign in the same format.

2. Sign with the full given name. The custom of signing with only the initial has no reason. Possibly it comes from the days when computing was expensive, and also from women who wanted to conceal their gender.

Today there are thousands of times more authors than a few decades ago and it is very important to sign with the full name to avoid confusion.

3. Adopt the international format:

Given-name I.  Family-name ("I." is an optional initial).

3.1. People who use 2 names must unite them directly (JeanPaul, Mariacristina ...) or with a hyphen (Steven-David, José-María...), or to use the second name as an initial (Jean P., María C., Steven D., José M.).

3.2. People who use 2 surnames must unite them directly (SchumakerBates, DavisDean...) or with a hyphen (Hernández-Smith, Carter-Robbio...)

4. The international format explained in the previous section ensures the authors to be properly cited in databases. But it must ensured also that the name is not confused with other author, something that it is increasingly common. For this reason a distinctive signature must be chosen, especially if other professionals have a similar name in the same subject field. To decide on this and see how many people are named with similar names, it is advisble to carry out a search on the internet.

People with common names like Smith, García, Rossi... must always use a middle initial and/or a middle name. In some cases it could be necessary to invent it.

Jorge Martin is not very frequent, but still is too common. Therefore this person should sign: Jorge B. Martin, or Jorge Martin-Benito, or Jorge Z. Martin-Benito (being perhaps Benito the mother's family name).

5. Special rules for Hispanic authors

5.1. Surnames having a preposition or an article should stick them to the name and sort them by the particle (De-Moya, David or La-Marca, Daniel).

5.2. In case of compound names María has to be sticked, or reduced to M (or omitted if it has a secondary rol). Never has to be abbreviated as Mª
Carlos-María, Carlos M., or Carlos

When María goes before (María-del-Carmen, María-Jesus ...) should not reduced to the initial M because it can be mistaken as Monsieur or Mister.

5.3. Do not use abbreviations such as Rguez or Fdez, in spite of being written always the same, since in some cases someone (editor, database producer) can expand them to the complete form.

5.4. It is recommended to keep accents and tildes (ñ) in iralis, but as in the rest of the cases, using them the same all the time.