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Government Accuracy in the Internet Age

Two stories this week bring up questions about accuracy of government web sites. The Los Angeles Times reports that Representative Henry Waxman (D-Los Angeles) is urging Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt to remove the website www.4parents.gov from the Internet, because it has inaccurate data on sex issues.

BeSpacific reports the links to documents posted on the Minority Office website of the Government Reform Committee. The Minority Office quotes scientific experts who say that 4parents.gov is “seriously flawed and likely to backfire, providing erroneous and incomplete information about sexually transmitted diseases, the effectiveness of contraceptives, and sexual orientation.”

Meanwhile a report in the Chronicle of Higher Education notes that The U.S. Department of Education has changed a website about eligibility of students for federal aid — removing incorrect information that students “must not have any drug convictions” to receive aid. Now the site ‘instructs students to complete a “drug conviction worksheet” to learn if any convictions affect their eligibility.’

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