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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.

“Let a thousand Jon Stewarts bloom.” Internet Archive launches TV broadcast news search and borrow

Congratulations to the Internet Archive for launching TV News Search & Borrow service. This is truly an amazing endeavor with a growing collection of “every morsel of news produced in the last three years by 20 different channels, encompassing more than 1,000 news series that have generated more than 350,000 separate programs devoted to news.” Search results will be in 30 second clips, and if someone wants a copy of the entire program, a DVD will be sent on loan. NY Times has more. I’m sending it in to be cataloged right now!!

Today the Internet Archive launches TV News Search & Borrow. This service is designed to help engaged citizens better understand the issues and candidates in the 2012 U.S. elections by allowing them to search closed captioning transcripts to borrow relevant television news programs.

The Internet Archive works to preserve the published works of humankind. Inspired by Vanderbilt University’s Television News Archive project, the Internet Archive collects and preserves television news. Like library collections of books and newspapers, this accessible archive of TV news enables anyone to reference and compare statements from this influential medium.

The collection now contains 350,000 news programs collected over 3 years from national U.S. networks and stations in San Francisco and Washington D.C. The archive is updated with new broadcasts 24 hours after they are aired. Older materials are also being added.

ProPublica Links for Following Nuclear News From Japan

Our Reading List for Following Nuclear News From Japan, by Marian Wang, ProPublica (March 15, 2011).

If you’re trying to follow the news from Japan, you may be finding that the news is coming out faster than you can actually read it.

We’ve compiled a few resources that we’ve found helpful as we track this developing story. With the news itself overwhelming enough as it is, we’re trying to keep it short so as not to overwhelm with quantity….

Sunshine Week 2010 shines light on government transparency

[UPDATE: Scroll down for list of library happenings for Sunshine Week]

Spring has sprung with a vengeance here in SF. And that could only mean one thing: Sunshine Week!! Yes it’s time once again to feel the warm FOIA on your cheek, to discuss and raise awareness of the importance of free and open government information, transparency and the [w:Freedom of Information Act]. Be on the lookout for editorials in your local newspaper (like this one in the Cleveland Plain Dealer), discuss FOIA with your friends and family (you’ll be glad you did :-)) and highlight it in your libraries — perhaps by having a public showing of the OpenTheGovernment Webcast!

OpenTheGovernment.org is having a Sunshine Week Webcast 12-2PM EST on Friday March 19 entitled “Building Transparency.” The Webcast will include a host of great speakers including Norm Eisen, Special Counsel to the President for Ethics and Government Reform, Jim Harper, Director of Information Policy Studies at the Cato Institute, John Wonderlich, Policy Director at the Sunlight Foundation, Kevin Goldberg, American Society of News Editors (ASNE) counsel, Miriam Nisbet, Director of the new Office of Government Information Services (OGIS), Melanie Sloan, Executive Director, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), Melanie Pustay, Director of the Department of Justice (DOJ) Office of Information Policy (OIP), Eric Gundersen, President and co-founder of Development Seed and Sean Moulton, Director of Federal Information Policy at OMB Watch. It should be a great discussion so hope you can tune in.

What libraries and others are doing for Sunshine Week:

  • Northern CA Association of Law Libraries (NOCALL), in association with the Special Library Association Sierra Nevada Chapter, is sponsoring 2 Sunshine Week events; one in Sacramento and one in San Francisco. Both have interesting lists of speakers and require registration for a small fee ($20 for Sacramento event and $15 for SF event). In addition, the SF event immediately precedes the NOCALL Spring Institute on information piracy, “Piracy on the Barbary Coast” which NOCALL and SLA members can attend at the NOCALL member rate, and later in the evening, a celebration of NOCALL’s 30th anniversary.
  • Freedom of Information Day at the New York Public Library. Tuesday, March 16, 2010, 10:30 – noon. Conference Room 18 on the lower level of New York Public Library (188 Madison Ave. @ 34th St.).

    This year’s guest speaker is Heather Joseph, Executive Director, the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition, (SPARC), an international alliance of academic and research libraries working to create a more open system of scholarly communications. FOIA day has been held at NYPL annually since 1993.

  • California State University San Bernardino Pfau Library has partnered with the San Bernardino League of Women Voters to be a site for the OpenTheGovernment.org webinar on government transparency. This is the second year that Pfau Library has participated. You can see video of last year.
  • The web site www.TalkStandards.com will focus on open government during its monthly online forum. The forum will take place on Thursday March 18th from 8-12 Pacific / 11-3 EST / 4-8pm GMT.

    TalkStandards is an active online community where ICT developers, researchers, policymakers and other interested parties can share ideas and collaborate on the global standards system. Each month, a timely topic is chosen (last month, it was eHealth, for example).

Top 25 censored stories of 2009/2010

I can’t believe Project Censored has been doing what they do for 34 years! That is, the media research program has been teaching Sonoma State University students and the public about censorship, the [w:First Amendment to the United States Constitution] and the importance of a free press in the US by researching important national news stories that are underreported, ignored, misrepresented, or censored by the US corporate media. I hope everyone reading this will purchase or donate a copy of Top Censored Stories of 2009/2010 to their local library. And also please consider donating some $$ to this worthy cause.

Note: FGI has no connection to or affiliation with Project Censored. We just love their work!

Top Censored Stories of 2009/2010

Project Censored releases 2010 top 25 “news that didn’t make the news”

Project Censored, a media research project from Sonoma State University in California every year puts out a list of “news that didn’t make the news.” They’ve just released their 2010 edition (see below). I hope lots of people will go out and get a copy for themselves and their local libraries because this is what journalism is all about. It is the flip side of govt transparency as more available govt information makes for better and more thorough journalism.

[Thanks for the tip Crooks and Liars!]