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Case Study in Historical Fact Checking

[Update 5/9/10: Thanks to Debbie Rabina for sending me a copy of her article and allowing us to post here (PDF). On a side note, how long will it be until ALA goes open access with all of their publications? Librarians should be walking the open access walk!]

I’d like to briefly commend this article from the Spring 2010 issue of DttP: Documents to the People:

Rabina, Debbie. “Ted Kennedy’s Speech at the 1980 Democratic National Convention: Researching Pre-digital government information in the Digital Age.” DttP: Documents to the People (2010) v. 38, no. 1: 18-22.

This article is notable for two reasons. It is a fine example of using current events to leverage interest in government information. The article also serves as a good “how-to” guide on evaluating factual claims past and present. Aside from these two main benefits the article demonstrates the continuing relevance of print resources while showing the usefulness of electronic resources. It rejects a “paper vs. electronic” version of the world in favor of a “both/and” approach.

As far as I can tell, this article is not available electronically, but could be acquired through interlibrary loan at your local library.

DttP: Documents to the People is aimed at government information librarians, but I believe it would be useful to transparency advocates and researchers of all stripes. Check it out if you can. I find it an important benefit of my membership in the Government Documents Roundtable of ALA.

CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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