Airbrushing History

Kalev Leetaru and Scott Althaus, of the Cline Center for Democracy at the University of Illinois, have written a report that I thought others here would find interesting. The report is called “Airbrushing History, American Style: The Mutability of Government Documents in the Digital Era,” and puts one in mind of the Ministry of Truth imagined by George Orwell in Nineteen eighty-four: a novel (London: Secker & Warburg, 1949).


  1. John, you may find this article, forwarded to me by Barbara Fingerote of McCarthy Tetrault, interesting as well.
    A Tool to Verify Digital Records, Even as Technology Shifts” By JOHN MARKOFF, New York Times, January 27, 2009. “Simple-to-use digital technology will make it more difficult to distort history in the future.”

  2. Thanks for this, John! It’s useful to have hard data to point to when talking to government about digital records preservation.