Who doesn’t like free full text? Other than the US State Department?

A recent post here asked, “Who does not like free food and drink?” A librarian’s corollary to that might be, “Who does not like free full-text access?”

The baby in Jimmy Fallon's commercial

Does not like more cash

As that baby in the Jimmy Fallon commercial demonstrates, there’s an exception to most every rule. In the case of full-text access, count the US State Department as a curious outlier.

See, more than a year ago WikiLeaks published the full text of 23 State Department cables, which are much like emails. News organizations everywhere reported the juicy bits they found in these (previously) secret documents.

Since the State Department never officially released the cables, fun-loving lawyers filed Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests for the 23 documents just to see what would happen.

Amusingly, our government released eleven of these already-available-on-the-internet-for-everyone-to-see documents—going  to the trouble of editing them heavily—and suppressed the other twelve entirely. It’s kind of instructive to look at them here; mousing over the blank passages will bring up the parts you’re not supposed to see.

Today’s Valuable Lesson:
For the ambitious academic researcher, there’s a lesson in all this that has nothing to do with Area 51, nor with Building 7 nor with any other supposed coverup. It’s just this: Don’t ever be fooled by by the seeming absence of full text.

Sometimes you’ll be Googling your topic and an article from JSTOR, say, will appear in the results. Then, if you’re off campus, when you click you’ll see a price tag for the full text of the article.

A good way avoid this trap is to use our library’s authenticated Google Scholar search. You’ll need to log in with your KU credentials, but once you do it’ll work just like  the same good ol’ Google you know & love.  The difference is  that it’ll now give you direct, free links straight to the content of many of our databases.


5 Responses to “Who doesn’t like free full text? Other than the US State Department?”

  1. 1 Lucas Belling April 13, 2014 at 5:15 pm

    I visited many blogs however the audio feature for audio songs
    current at this web site is truly excellent.

  2. 2 cataract surgery recovery April 19, 2014 at 1:13 am

    Because of its patented structure and design, it will lay inside the eye in a stable fashion while preventing excess light from entering the eye.
    Crowns are primarily the most common restorations, however
    dental implants, caps, dentures and veneers fit this category
    as well. This inflammatory process can cause the valve to
    fuse and harden, resulting in mitral stenosis.

  3. 3 plaster courses April 20, 2014 at 12:23 am

    Renee is a member of the Sugarloaf Chapter and Co-Founder of MAGIC’
    Camp Mentoring a Girl in Construction. market and in
    part to increases in golf course construction overseas, many
    golf course designers have increasingly looked abroad for opportunities to ply their trade in
    recent years. Every day, I speak with various users of
    manufacturing and construction software who are disappointed with their current system.

  4. 4 internet service providers morann pa October 4, 2014 at 12:50 am

    Admiring the time and energy you put into your
    site and in depth information you present. It’s good to come across a blog every once in a while that isn’t the
    same out of date rehashed information. Fantastic read!
    I’ve bookmarked your site and I’m including your RSS feeds to my Google account.

  5. 5 ircivil2011.gigfa.com May 13, 2015 at 8:22 am

    What’s up, its nice paragraph on the topic
    of media print, we all know media is a wonderful source of information.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,590 other followers

The Elusive Sea Cow Tweets



Blog Stats

  • 2,198,650 hits


Kutztown University is part of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education.

%d bloggers like this: