More about fake news

Kirsten Smith My Blog 0 Comments

Fake news is still a thing and recently I listened to some very interesting podcasts with new information that I must share – because it’s frightening! First this librarian podcast Circulating Ideas interviewed a Canadian academic librarian, William Badke, about information literacy and fake news. Information literacy is so important and so undervalued. I still remember speaking to a class …

Briefing notes

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Government officials write a lot of briefing notes to their ministers and deputy ministers. For journalists they are a gold mine of information and potential story ideas. For industry they are a gold mine of intelligence. For historians, they are a gold mine…..you get idea. This also means media and industry spend a lot of money in $5 increments ordering …

Infomart

Kirsten Smith My Blog 2 Comments

Minor update: The red flags I mention in the last graf apply to more databases than just Infomart.  Many other newspaper, magazine or scholarly databases use algorithms and scripts instead of humans to clean the data. That situation won’t change so it’s good to keep it in mind when searching. ********************* I  was really sad last month to read that …

Leaks to the media

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People who know things leak information to the media every day. It’s a given. It’s how business gets done in in that weird, symbiotic relationship between the media and the governments they cover. Leaking information to journalists will never go away. Governments will continue to threaten leakers – except the leakers they sanction. Murray Brewster of the CBC talks about …

So you think you’re accountable?

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I submit a few Access to Information requests every week on behalf of clients. This is a law that allows any Canadian citizen, permanent resident or corporation to ask for records from most federal departments and agencies. The law itself is outdated (it was passed when I was in high school and has yet to see substantive revisions) and riddled …

A few of my favorite databases

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This is just a short post on some of the common sources I use to verify Canadian historical information. Number 1 is The Dictionary of Canadian Biography. The database includes revision information for each entry which is helpful. Most folks have to be long dead to be included in the DCB, but exceptions are made for the very famous such …

The value of libraries and archives to journalists

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I attended the annual conference of the Canadian Association of Journalists last week and had the opportunity to speak on a panel on the joy that is libraries and archives. I was very encouraged to see most chairs were filled for our panel because we imparted some fine wisdom.  In a nutshell my contribution to the discussion was to remind the …