Researchers at the University of Illinois say they have found evidence on the Whitehouse Web site that suggests “a pattern of revision and removal from the public record that spans several years, from 2003 through at least 2005. Instead of issuing a series of revised lists with new dates, or maintaining an updated master list while preserving copies of the old ones, the White House removed original documents, altered them, and replaced them with backdated modifications that only appear to be originals.”
- Airbrushing History, American Style, Scott Althaus and Kalev Leetaru, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, November 25, 2008
- Iraq Ally Lists Were Altered, Study Shows, by Thom Shanker, New York Times, November 24, 2008.
Once again, our reliance on government websites for current information fails to preserve the historical record and yields an incomplete, unverifiable, and even altered record.
We need government to instantiate information and actively deposit those instantiations outside the dot-gov realm (e.g., with FDLP libraries) to help guarantee a complete and accurate record.