Current Awareness in the Current World

How do I monitor things, let me count the ways. The many, many, many ways.
iGoogle and Twitterfox

Twitter, Google Reader (yes, I switched), Facebook status updates, LinkedIn groups, internal firm communications, and very significantly print that comes in the mail.

One item that I used to monitor in print is the Canada Gazette. I made a decision to monitor it in print years ago because I was afraid of missing something if I had to remember to go to a website to retrieve it. This unfortunate choice of media nearly caused me to miss the proclamation of the CCAA and BIA changes that were recently proclaimed in force (SI/2009-0068)

My logic in looking at the print version might have been sound when I originally made that decision. It was pre-RSS, at least in my world. I remember thinking in April 2003, when the gazette became official, that I should retain the print so that it crossed under my eye-balls through the mail. It has continued to be a print subscription in my library. The budget for this title is small, and I appreciate seeing it in hard copy. I read this (and many, many, many other current awareness items) in order to pass the word on items of – often critical – interest to others in my organization. The only problem with this scenario is that I should be reading it as soon as it is posted every second Wednesday.

The Canada Gazette website was redesigned this spring and they now offer RSS feeds, which Steve posted about here. I disregarded subscribing to these feeds because they do not offer a feed for the whole item.

Convenience might drive me to find a consistent, sustainable technology solution for making the Canada Gazette cross my path. A technology solution is available by subscribing to CCH Canadian’s Legislative Pulse, but that is not within my budget.

I now have an Outlook task set to look at the website every second Wednesday. I hope it will prove consistent and sustainable. Lesson learned.


  1. Thank you for sharing this, Shaunna. It is so difficult to keep up on all fronts, and then if you have to continually rethink your methods of keeping up, it becomes even more challenging!

    I wonder how others are keeping track of it all?

  2. Hot tip from Shaké Hagopian, Legal Information & Research Officer, CN Law:

    I use Infominder to track changes to web pages. I have created a tracker for the Canada Gazette page, when there is a change on the page I receive an e-mail. Here is the information on the company that provides this service. The prices are very reasonable.


    Thanks Shaké!

  3. I use Carruthers Communication @

  4. I set up an Outlook task for the Canada Gazette about a year ago. While it’s a great tool, sometimes I forget to do it!

    Great post, Shaunna. Current awareness is such an important part of the service we offer our lawyers.

  5. Interested to read about Current Awarenesss issues in Canada in terms of keeping up with legislation and legislative developments. As an Editor for TimeBase and Australian Company that has provided a solution for these types of information needs for Australian Librarians for some years now I would suggest the following links to information about our LawOne and LawTracker products may be of interest as they tackle many of these issues for our subscribers.