In the text, I have, e.g.
"...a major role to play in role-playing (Smith et al., 1990)."
But can I use the same abbreviation in the bibliography?
Smith, K. et al. 1990. Playing major roles in role plays. Psych. Econ. 44(1): 103–113.
I ask because the bibliopgraphy is now 12,000+ words and the only way I can think to shorten it is to remove those thousands of co-authors. Here it says you can, but it's for books.