Future Scenario (anonymous)
The climate of fear and paranoia engendered by years of terrorist bombings, together with the fact that the average American sees only about 5 minutes of hard news per day (both newspaper and radio audiences have drastically declined since the turn of the century) has produced a climate in which Americans support, or at least, don’t oppose, censorship by their government. The tight job market, and continual lose of jobs to China mean that many Americans hold two jobs to make ends meet, and simply don’t care about anything other than their day to day existence, and getting the lowest price on jeans.
Wexis still makes a fair amount of information available – but only to paying customers. The non-profit, Abbott Hoduski Foundation among others, uses FOIA requests regularly to obtain information which it then posts to the internet and delivers to libraries wishing to store it locally. However, P.L.116-66 will squeeze this flow of information even further.
Government Information Centers, primarily at libraries, operate in a collaborative arrangement to obtain and web post information about U.S. government activities. This collaborative network is very loosely coordinated by the Government Web Office (GWO, formerly called the Government Printing Office), in conjunction with the Government Information Centers Library Association (GICLA).
Local storage of electronic files became very important when one of the “dark electronic archives” was attacked by terrorists in 2013 and about 60% of the files were destroyed. Since electronic government information is still free, when its available at all, research institutions see the value in hosting it locally. Many researchers have exploited government data sets to demonstrate, among other things, that the earth has warmed an average of 2° Fahrenheit since the turn of the century. Locally housing this digital information allows researchers to access it without additional barriers that the government is now imposing.
The two tangible dark archives of government information, maintained by the GWO have been used several times to re-digitize digital files that somehow vanished from the Internet. With sea level rising, the 2009 decision move the Washington, D.C. dark archive to Culpepper, Virginia proved to be a good one. Additionally, the 15 distributed full government information collections of printed materials are proving their value. While most users of government information are happy with electronic access, the printed documents are more trusted by historical researchers than the internet versions.
Access to locally stored as well as agency posted government information is primarily via the Franklin Digital System which is contracted out by the GWO to Moogle (the merged Microsoft/Google empire). No additional metadata is added because the fingerprint recognition built into computers is able to deduce what the searcher needs after analyzing the present search and correlating it with his or her previous searches. Individual Government Information Centers have either written software to search locally stored files, or use Moogle to access local files. Those concerned with antiquated privacy issues have usually written local search software that doesn’t work as well as Moogle.