Vogue Archive Now Online-Invaluable for Fashionistas

Fashion magazine Vogue has opened it archive for (paid) public viewing.    By digitizing and scanning its collection in its entirety (advertisements and photos included), Vogue has set a new high water mark for digital archives, many of which, up until this point, have omitted large parts of the printed collection from the digital archiving process. While not inexpensive ($1575-per-year), researchers and scholars interested in fashion, photography and advertising will find this resource invaluable.

For more information, go directly to the Vogue archive ("Every Issue.  Every Page.  1892 to today") and read this piece in The Wall Street Journal.

California Watch Lobbying Interest Database

California Watch -- the independent journalism collaborative founded by the Center for Investigative Reporting and staffed by top shelf journalists -- has created a database that enables researchers to input California bill numbers and learn which interests lobbied on the measures. This data is drawn from California Form 635 on which registered lobbyists declare what measures they have lobbied, along with the aggregate amount they have spent on lobbying.  Prior to the California Watch system going live, researchers could access the data by interest group (i.e., by reviewing each lobbyist's filing) but not by measure number.  So, this tool will enable a whole new type of analysis.

Read more about the system and some noted limitations here.

Novel Use of Public Records -- Cincinnati Designers Print 1950s Mug Shots as Notebook Covers

Last week, we commented on NARA’s planned destruction of bankruptcy and federal court records from the period between 1970 and 1995. Be confidant that NARA will undertake the destruction in a manner that actually leads to the records being destroyed. Not so with a number of mug shots from the1950sthat were “destroyed” by the Alameda County (CA) Sheriff’s Department. Rather than shred the mug shots, the department threw them in a dumpster. From the dumpster the photos made their way to a flea market and ultimately into the hands of two Cincinnati-based designers who have digitally altered them (substituting “Cincinnati” for “Alameda County” in the place identifier and enhancing the photos) and are now using them as notebook covers.

Contacted by The New York Times about the matter, a spokesman for the Alameda County Sheriff’s Department affirmed that arrest records are public records in California and not subject to copyright but otherwise didn’t address the privacy debate surrounding the mugshot notebooks.

Want a notebook or to learn more about the designers?  Try their Facebook page here.

Complete Pentagon Papers To Be Released

The New York Times (and other major dailies) reported today that all 7,000 pages of the Pentagon Papers will be released on Monday, June 13, 2011-- 40 years after Daniel Ellsberg's original leak which led to groundbreaking First Amendment jurisprudence.  Interesting to note from the news coverage on the release:

  1. This is the first time a full, unredacted copy of the Pentagon Papers will be published.  Earlier releases were incomplete.
  2. Leslie H. Gelb, now president emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations and then director of the task force that wrote the officially titled Report of the O.S.D. Vietnam Task Force, characterized his team's work as "catch-as-catch-can studies based on available documents," and said the work was never meant to be comprehensive.

Here's the link to the full story in The Times.