Thursday, February 08, 2018

Free Federal Government Information and Documents Online: govinfo

The Internet has a wealth of free online information, but it isn’t always easy to tell what’s authentic. When supporting assertions based on federal law, data, reports, and other materials, it’s imperative that you know you are citing information that has not been altered. Happily, the Government Publishing Office’s (GPO) latest website, www.govinfo.gov, designed to house all known federal government information that originated in print or was born digital, is now live and no longer in beta form. The site will continue to provide authenticated and certified PDF documents, so researchers can trust that the documents have not been altered since they were disseminated by the GPO.

You may be wondering, “But what about FDSys?” FDSys still exists for now (it’s scheduled to be retired at the end of 2018), but the replacement website, govinfo.gov, is designed to be more up-to-date and user friendly, operating in the way most online researchers today expect sophisticated databases to operate. For example, govinfo.gov is optimized so that it can be viewed on any device without limitations. The site also links you to related content and gives you two new ways to browse content. If you’d like to learn more about using govinfo.gov, check out the free webinar offered by the Federal Depository Library Program February 13, 2018.