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Free Government Information (FGI) is a place for initiating dialogue and building consensus among the various players (libraries, government agencies, non-profit organizations, researchers, journalists, etc.) who have a stake in the preservation of and perpetual free access to government information. FGI promotes free government information through collaboration, education, advocacy and research.

40 to 38 Days to Government Information Liberation

2. Seek to establish the most effective techniques individual bibliographic institutions can contribute to a national system of government information access, preservation and organization.

Repeating cycles (sometimes called feedback loops)are important to any professional group or institution. Based on standards and protocols, these cycles often sustain efficiency and predictability. As Daniel Cornwell points out in an earlier comment — loops keep the machinery going at some level. When we have to reinvent the wheel everytime — that is where it becomes more curse than cure.

For the next couple of weeks, among other points I want to raise, I will point out where the Hoduski and McKnelly argument for a full fledge study of the depository system is not a feedback loop. I will document just how many times the depository system in particular, and GPO in general, has been studied, analyzed, investigated, and heaped with recommendations.

For instance, many of Carl Malamud’s recommendations stand on the shoulders of earlier policy iniatives — especially something called the Government Information Locator Service — an early world wide web initiative to establish some kind of standardized descriptions of federal information resources. For another ancient link (1994) to this effort from (how many of us remember this group?) Taxpayer Assests Project — desribes some of the rich policy history of GILS.

In this case, the feedback loop shared by GILS and Malamud’s recommendations is one that tries to come up with a form of government information organization, classification and accessibility that is clear and open to any and all systems.

See you on Day 37.

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