Home » Search results for 'fugitive' (Page 2)

Search Results for: fugitive

Our mission

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.

Webinar on fugitive documents: notes and links

These are notes and links and resources mentioned in our webinar on fugitive government documents that Jim and I presented for the “Help! I’m an Accidental Government Information Librarian” webinar series:


Process for “fugitive hunting:”

In the paper era, FDLP librarians would subscribe to mailing lists and make personal contacts with local/regional offices of Federal agencies (EPA, Forest Service and the like) in order to make sure their libraries were collecting all documents in scope of the FDLP. Fugitives in the paper era numbered in the 10s/year. As James A. Jacobs noted in his presentation, the scope of born-digital documents from Federal agencies demands a collaborative, FDLP community-wide, large-scale fugitives project:

  1. keep track of agencies
  2. use tools like Update Scanner firefox plugin to keep track of when a federal agency’s site is changed and when individual documents are published.
  3. Delve into the “dark web:”
    1. create a list of known federal dbs
    2. analyze the dbs to find static url structures
    3. Report fugitive documents (see #5)
  4. Check GPO’s Catalog of Government Publications (CGP) to see if the new publications have been cataloged.
  5. Report fugitive documents to GPO and to the LostDocs blog
  6. Join the “Everyday Electronic Materials” Zotero group and help us test out a newer, faster, more automatic fugitive document workflow!!
  7. Lather, rinse, repeat!

Code Snippets

<form action="http://www.archive-it.org/public/search">
<input type="hidden" name="collection" value="***COLLECTIONID***" />
<input type="text" name="query" />
<input type="submit" name="go" value="Go" />

<form action="http://www.archive-it.org/public/search">
<input type="hidden" name="collection" value="***COLLECTIONID***" />
<input type="text" name="query" />
<input type="submit" name="go" value="Go" />

Note: You can search across the Stanford Archive-It collections via https://archive-it.org/organizations/159. For the Search form to work, you’ll need to edit the ***COLLECTIONID*** to in 2 places with the proper ID:

—Bay Area governments = 903
—Climate Change = 1064
—CRS reports = 1078
—FRUS = 1515
—FOIA = 924
—Fugitives = 2361


Baldwin, Gil. 2003. Fugitive Documents – On the Loose or On the Run. Presentation by Director, Library Programs Service, GPO American Association of Law Libraries Conference Seattle, WA, July 15, 2003. Administrative Notes Vol. 24, no. 10 (August 15, 2003).

Bower, Cynthia. Federal Fugitives, DND, and other Aberrants: a Cosmology. Documents to the People v17 n3 (Sep 1989) p.120–126.

Chesapeake Digital Preservation Group. 2014. “Link Rot” and Legal Resources on the Web: A 2014 Analysis by the Chesapeake Digital Preservation Group

DiMario, Michael F. 1997. PUBLIC PRINTER. Prepared Statement Before The Subcommittee On Legislative Branch Appropriations Committee On Appropriations U.S. Senate On Appropriations Estimates For Fiscal Year 1998. (JUNE 5, 1997)

FDsys Collections

Jacobs, James A. 2014. Born-Digital U.S. Federal Government Information: Preservation and Access. 2014. Report prepared for Leviathan: Libraries and Government Information in the Era of Big Data, CRL (April 25, 2014). Also see: Government Records and Information: Real Risks and Potential Losses. [Presentation slides and audio recording] and Speaker notes, additional links, examples, and accompanying material.

Kott, Katherine B. 2010. Everyday Electronic Materials in Policy and Practice. CNI Fall 2010 Project Briefings.


Shaw, Thomas Shuler. 1966. Library Associations and Public Documents, Library Trends (July,1966) p167–177.

Stanford University, Social Sciences Resource Group. Archive-It collections.

U.S. Bureau of Justice Assistance. Increasing analytic capacity of state and local law enforcement agencies…

U.S. Code. Title 44

U.S. Department of State. Keystone XL Pipeline Project Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS).

U.S. President.Executive Order 13662.
Other copies: White House, Federal Register, Federal Register printer-friendly, GPO Federal Regsiter PDF, GPO Federal Register html, GPO html, GPO mods, GPO Premis, GPO zip

U.S. White House. The White House current third party (social media) pages / accounts

Zotero Group: Everyday Electronic Materials

Selected Technologies and Infrastructures

Webinar on “fugitive” documents, January 12. Register Now!

We hope you will join FGI folks James R. Jacobs and James A. Jacobs for a “Help! I’m an Accidental Government Information Librarian” webinar on Monday, January 12 from 12:00 – 1:00 p.m. (Eastern time) on the topic of “fugitive” documents!

Please RSVP for the Session by January 12 at 10:00 am using this link: http://tinyurl.com/grs-session43

Compete announcement below.

*Help! I’m an Accidental Government Information Librarian presents … Fugitive hunters: community-based digital collection development of born-digital government information.*

The Government Resources Section of the North Carolina Library Association welcomes you to a series of webinars designed to help us all do better reference work by increasing our familiarity with government information resources, and by discovering the best strategies for navigating them.

“Fugitive” documents – documents not sent automatically to FDLP libraries – have always been a problem for the FDLP community. Libraries have historically dealt with fugitives aggressively and creatively, collectively and individually, in response to the needs of their Designated Communities. However, the scope of the problem in the born-digital era is geometrically greater.

To wit, the number of “tangible” documents distributed by GPO in a year (about 10 thousand) and the number of digital documents in FDsys (about 7 million) is only a tiny fraction of the number of born-digital files harvested in the 2008 End of Term crawl of the .gov domain (about 160 million).

This presentation will give context to the “fugitive” issue and the digital present, demonstrating that born-digital community-wide collection development is a logical, rational, responsible, and important part of a document librarian’s job. It will help govt information librarians convince their administrations that building collections of born digital government information is the most effective and efficient way that each library can address the information needs of their own communities.

The presentation will provide practical examples of techniques that libraries of any size and budget can use to collect born-digital documents individually and in bulk via Web harvesting.

It will offer a coherent vision of a digital FDLP in which libraries actively participate and collaborate, building a more complete, more comprehensive, more secure national collection of born-digital government information.

James A. Jacobs (jajacobs@ucsd.edu) is Data Services Librarian Emeritus, University of California San Diego. He has more than 25 years experience working with digital information, digital services, and digital library collections. He is a technical consultant and advisor to the Center for Research Libraries in the auditing and certification of digital repositories using the Trusted Repository Audit Checklist (TRAC) and related CRL criteria. He served as Data Services Librarian at the University of California San Diego from 1985 to 2006 and co-taught the ICPSR summer workshop, “Providing Social Science Data Services: Strategies for Design and Operation” from 1990 to 2012. He is a co-founder of Free Government Information (freegovinfo.info).

James R. Jacobs (jrjacobs@stanford.edu is the US Government Information Librarian at Stanford University Libraries where he works on both traditional collection development as well as digital projects like LOCKSS-USDOCS and Web harvesting. He received his MSLIS in 2002 from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is a member of ALA’s Government Documents Roundtable (GODORT) and served a 3 year term (2009 – 2012) on Depository Library Council to the Public Printer, including serving as DLC Chair from 2011 – 2012. He is a co-founder of Free Government Information (freegovinfo.info) and Radical Reference ( radicalreference.info) and is on the board of Question Copyright, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that promotes a better public understanding of the history and effects of copyright, and encourages the development of alternatives to information monopolies.

*We will meet together for Session #43, online on January 12 from 12:00 – 1:00 p.m. (Eastern). Please RSVP for the Session by January 12 at 10:00 am using this link: http://tinyurl.com/grs-session43

Technical requirements: We will be using collaborative software called Blackboard Collaborate. It requires that you be able to download Java onto your computer, but you do not need any special software. After you RSVP, we will send you a link that you can use to test the software. If you have any questions, please contact Lynda Kellam (lmkellam@uncg.edu). You do not need a microphone as a chat system is available in the software, but you do need speakers or headphones.

The session will be recorded and made available after the live session, linked from the NCLA GRS web page .

What makes a “fugitive document” a fugitive?

First off, I’d like to thank GPO (now the Government Publishing Office!) for posting about this Historic Fugitive Document Available through the CGP. I’d like to give a little context and parse out what makes a fugitive document — a document that is within scope of the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) but for whatever reason is not distributed by GPO to depository libraries — a fugitive?

Fugitives are a rapidly growing problem as, according to GPO, 97% of all US documents are now born-digital, and most federal agencies are now publishing born-digital documents on their own .gov sites, thus cutting GPO out of the publishing process — and eroding the national bibliography that is the Catalog of Government Publications (CGP) (BTW, my colleague Jim Jacobs (yes there are two of us!) and I will be giving a “Help! I’m an Accidental Government Information Librarian” webinar on fugitives next month so stay tuned for the announcement!).

In the case of the 1991 “Report on Semiconductors, Fiber Optics, Superconducting Materials, and Advanced Manufacturing”, an emeritus professor gifted this document to my colleague Stella Ota, our physics and astronomy bibliographer, who passed it along to me. I thought for sure we’d have this stand-alone or in the [United States Congressional Serial Set], the long-standing official collection of Congressional reports and documents near and dear to many govt information librarians’ hearts — and if you’re particularly nerdy, there’s a great book recently published about the Serial Set by Andrea Sevetson and Mary Lou Cumberpatch!

But the more I looked, the less I found. It was announced as transmitted to Congress in the Congressional Record (137 Cong Rec S 4449) and in the Public Papers of the President. But it didn’t show up in the Serial Set or in my wider net of the CGP, FDsys, or Monthly Catalog (another gem, the precursor to the CGP published since 1895). It shows up as a stub in Google Books, but nothing in Hathitrust. No libraries are listed in the WorldCat record. It simply hadn’t been published, though it was announced that it had. (pro tip: don’t always believe the Congressional Record when they say something has been published, check all the sources to make sure!).

I don’t know how this Stanford emeritus professor came to have the document in his possession, but it had clearly fallen through the FDLP cracks. Thanks to Astrid Smith, one of our fine staff that work in the Stanford Library digitization lab in Digital Library Systems and Services (DLSS), it was quickly and expertly digitized, OCR’d, and stored in our Stanford Digital Repository, and also made physically available in the library.

So there you have it, a day in the life of 1 fugitive US publication.

Historic Fugitive Document Available through the CGP

Last Updated: December 18 2014
Published: December 18 2014
The 1991 report prepared by the Technology Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, “Report of the President to the Congress on Federal Policies, Budgets, and Technical Activities in Semiconductors, Fiber Optics, Superconducting Materials & Advanced Manufacturing,” is now available through GPO’s Catalog of U.S. Government Publications.

OCLC Number: 898189404
CGP System Number: 000938821
SuDoc Class: C 1.202:SE 5
Item Number: 0129-B (EL)
PURL: http://purl.fdlp.gov/GPO/gpo53991

GPO thanks James Jacobs and the staff at Stanford University for collaborating with GPO to provide the public with access to this historic fugitive document.

NARA releases its annual Records Management Self-Assessment and a reminder to report fugitive documents

It takes a village … of government information librarians to make sure that government documents within scope of the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) are collected, described, and distributed to FDLP libraries around the country. Here’s an example of how the FDLP safety net works for fugitive government documents — those documents that *are* within scope, but have not made their way into the FDLP system.

  1. My friend Gary Price tweets about NARA’s release of its 2012 annual “Records Management Self-Assessment” which tells the good, bad and ugly about whether or not Federal agencies are compliant with statutory and regulatory records management requirements.
  2. I retweeted it as I know lots of my followers are interested to know how federal agencies are doing in their archival responsibilities.
  3. I checked GPO’s Catalog of Government Publications (CGP) and found that GPO has a record for it in the CGP, but that their permanent url (PURL) only has the 2009 edition saved in their archive.
  4. I submitted a LostDocs form to the GPO so that they’d add 2010, 2011 and 2012 editions to their archive. I then forwarded my LostDocs receipt to the LostDocs blog to track this fugitive’s progress and seed the cloud so to speak with critical government documents.

And the cycle of government information life continues. But we need lots of volunteers reporting fugitive govt documents to GPO. When you find a document of interest online, check and report it if it’s not in the CGP. Many hands make light work!

Lost Docs Report/Update on November-December 2009 Fugitive Documents


In addition to our usual monthly report, we at the Lost Docs Project Blog will from time to time revisit, check, and update posted document receipts that at the time of their corresponding monthly reports were still classed as fugitives. The following report focuses on the receipts posted from November-December 2009.

Of the 149 fugitive document receipts posted November-December 2009, 49 (33%) of the titles have had records added to the Catalog of Government Publications (CGP), 26 of these have been added since the November and December 2009 monthly reports. Three of the cataloged titles had not been assigned a PURL (Persistent Uniform Resource Locator) so we also marked these as “Preservation Needed”. While the low percentage of items cataloged is disappointing, we are appreciative of those records that have been created and added to the CGP. A list of cataloged items, based on the posted receipts, can be viewed at https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0AjA1ChZ8rDu5dGw0VllsRHpqSk1HcXctM1dMQVlBMWc&hl=en or visit the Lost Docs Project Blog and view the “found” items with November-December 2009 dates. We have highlighted a few of the document titles cataloged since the 2009 monthly reports, they are listed below.

Read you Loud and Clear!: The Story of NASA’s Spaceflight Tracking and Data Network (EL)

Mineral Investigations in the Bristol Bay Mining District Study Area, Southwest Alaska (EL)

Nuestros hijos, nuestra responsabilidad (EL)

Behind International Rankings of Infant Mortality: How the United States Compares with Europe (EL)


If you like the concept of a public listing of fugitive documents reported to GPO, there are a number of easy ways to help us:

1.If you report a fugitive document to GPO, send your e-mailed receipt to lostdocs@freegovinfo.info. We welcome any item reported to GPO in the past month. It is best if you can send us the receipt the same day you get it from GPO. Some e-mail programs will support auto-forwarding. If so, please consider autoforwarding items where the subject contains “lostdocs submission.”

2.Visit the blog at lostdocs.freegovinfo.info and comment on the listed items. Comments can include — Did your library receive the item? Did you find it in the CGP? Do you think the item is out of scope for the CGP? Did you report the item as well and so on.

3.Post the blog link to your website or share it on Facebook, Twitter, or other social media.

4.Subscribe to the blog feed at lostdocs.freegovinfo.info/feed/ or better yet incorporate the feed into your website or blog.

Lost Docs Project Blog Team
Meredith Johnston
Jeffrey Hartsell-Gundy