Opportunities and challenges for the 21st century FDLP (CNI Spring 2012)


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James Jacobs, Government Information Librarian, Stanford University Libraries

Suzanne Sears, Assistant Dean for Public Services, University of North Texas Libraries

David Walls, Preservation Librarian, US Government Printing Office

Date: Monday, April 2, 2012


The vast majority of all US Government documents published today are “born digital,” published electronically and available through the Internet, and will never be printed by the federal government. The lack of a systematic process for capturing, preserving, and disseminating born-digital government information challenges the ability of the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) in being able to provide permanent and equal access to online-only government information to all citizens. However, GPO and the FDLP community have begun to make strides on this most critical issue. This project briefing will describe several exciting initiatives currently underway to capture, preserve and provide access to born-digital government information – including GPO’s Federal Digital System (FDsys) and web harvesting initiatives, and the agency’s partnerships with Federal agencies; the CyberCemetery, CRS Report archive and robust digitization program and digital repository of the University of North Texas; and the LOCKSS-USDOCS collaborative program. These projects offer examples of how the FDLP community, in partnership and under formal agreements with GPO can work collaboratively to assure the long-term preservation of born-digital government information to “keep America informed.”

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Opportunities and challenges for the 21st century FDLP (CNI Spring 2012)

  1. 1. Opportunities and challenges for the 21st century FDLPJames Jacobs, Stanford UniversitySuzanne Sears, University of North TexasDavid Walls, US Government Printing Office
  2. 2. Agenda:1. Introduction2. Principles of the FDLP3. GPO: David Walls4. LOCKSS-USDOCS: James Jacobs5. UNT efforts toward digital FDLP: Suzanne Sears6. Wrap-up and Q&A
  3. 3. Principles of the FDLP● Distribution / "deposit" of govt information● Geographic participation● No-fee permanent public access● Tamper-evident, redundant system● Collaborative preservation● Forward democratic ideals● Serve public interest / public access / public control / public preservation
  4. 4. "Keeping America Informed"A popular Government, withoutpopular information, or themeans of acquiring it, is but aPrologue to a Farce or aTragedy; or, perhaps both.Knowledge will forever governignorance: And a people whomean to be their ownGovernors, must armthemselves with the powerwhich knowledge gives.--James Madison to W. T.Barry. 4 Aug. 1822. Writings 9:103--9
  5. 5. Where it all began1813: Congressional Document Distribution1861: US Government Printing OfficeAll Federal Agencies required by law to print through GPO1895: The FDLP created by an act of Congress; made partof GPO● Library program now at the source of all authentic government information● Librarians select publications from GPOs print output for distribution to designated libraries● Selection and distribution in the absence of a "legal deposit" law
  6. 6. 1993: A New Information ModelGovernment Printing Office Electronic Information AccessEnhancement Act● The Congressional Record and the Federal Register go digital● GPO Access created to disseminate digital government information● Digital gov docs officially become "information dissemination products"● Sunset of GPO Access March 16, 2012. Now FDsys, www.fdsys. gov"This important step forward in the electronic dissemination of Federalinformation will provide valuable insights into the most effective meansof disseminating all public Government information."--Bill Clinton
  7. 7. Beyond Scope Determination and SelectionOld model: Selecting publications for distribution to FDLP librariesNew model:-Searching the web for content to harvest and archive: FederalAgencies are under no legal obligation to notify GPO of a switch fromprint to web publishing, nor are they obligated to notify GPO of changesmade to their web sites. (still no legal deposit law)-Partnership with UNT for archiving: Cyber Cemetery-Membership in the International Internet Preservation Consortium,IIPC and an Archive-it web harvesting partner-Outreach to Federal Agency web publishers"The web is a mess." -- Brewster Kahle
  8. 8. A 21st Century Information Model:The Federal Digital System: FDsys● Authentic government information● "FDsys is LOCKSS enabled"● NARA content hosted on FDsys: Nixon tapes and Post JFK Assassination Air Force One Flight Deck Recording● LCs Thomas search engine uses content from FDsys● Ingest standards and cost models for FDsys agency publishers● Working on Trusted Digital Repository CertificationMobile Apps:-US Congressional Member Guide-Congressional Record - in partnership with the Library of Congress-Fiscal 2013 Budget for the U.S. Government
  9. 9. Working Together for a Vibrant FDLP FutureThe FDLP Forecast Study:● Moving into a digital future● Needs of users are changing and how they access information● Need a clear vision based on consensus about the future direction of the FDLP● Want to know, document, and represent voices of all library typesSurveying the FDLP: Extensive FDLP Community Outreach● The Library Forecast questionnaire● State Forecast questionnaire● State Focused Action Plans
  10. 10. LOCKSS-USDOCS● Targeted Web collection and distributed preservation● Lots of Copies Keep Stuff Safe● Replicates FDLP in the digital environment● “digital deposit” (for more see http://freegovinfo. info/taxonomy/term/3)● Tamper evident● lockss-usdocs.stanford.edu
  11. 11. LOCKSS-USDOCS is ...Federal register, code of federal regulations, congressionalrecord, congressional bills, congressional reports, USCode, Public&Private laws, Public Papers of the President,historic supreme court decisions, US Statutes at Large,GAO Reports, US Budget ...and more!!http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/browse/collectiontab.action
  12. 12. LOCKSS-USDOCS participantshttp://snipurl.com/lockss-usdocs-partners
  13. 13. UNT & GPO Partners In a Digital FDLPCyberCemetery● http://digital.library.unt.edu/explore/collections/GDCC/● Online archive of websites from U.S. government agencies or commissions that are no longer operating● Started in 1997● 74 websites currently archived● Partnership with GPO and NARA
  14. 14. Congressional Research Service(CRS) Reports● http://digital.library.unt.edu/explore/collections/CRSR/● Collection of reports produced by research specialists at the Congressional Research Service for members of Congress on topics relevant to current legislation● CRS produces approximately 1,000 new and 4,000 revised reports each year● Only Congress can search the CRS website for reports● Almost 12,000 reports available on the UNT website
  15. 15. Additional Digital Collections● A to Z Digitization Project● Federal Communications Commission Record● World War I and II Posters and Newsmaps● United States Experiment Station Record & Reports● National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics● Office of Technology Assessment● End-of-Term Harvest● And more to come!
  16. 16. Lets not shoot ourselves in the foot
  17. 17. Further reading and links● GPO Federal Digital System http://fdsys.gov● Stanford Web Archiving http://archive-it.org/home/ssrg● UNT Digital Library http://digital.library.unt.edu● Future of the FDLP Free Government Information. http://freegovinfo. info/taxonomy/term/1087● “Digital deposit” http://freegovinfo.info/taxonomy/term/3● Preservation for all: LOCKSS-USDOCS and our digital future. James Jacobs and Victoria Reich. Documents to the People (DttP) Volume 38:3 (Fall 2010). http://freegovinfo.info/system/files/lockssusdocs-dttp38%283%29.pdf● A Guide to Distributed Digital Preservation. K. Skinner and M. Schultz, Eds. (Atlanta, GA: Educopia Institute, 2010). http://www.metaarchive.org/GDDP