Using ref/note tags is not the only way to do footnotes. Some people prefer to use Cite.php. Cite.php has many advantages, but the use of it is not mandatory. You can use the Ref converter to replace ref/note tags with the newer Cite.php style. Be aware that some articles use both the Note and Ref systems to provide separate Notes and References sections. If you are interested in the discussion, please see the Footnotes talk page.