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records management

  • Privacy, Censorship, and Good Records Management: Brooklyn Public Library in the Crosshairs

    Over at, Jessamyn West has a brief write up about a post on the New York Times' City Room blog about placing access restrictions on offensive material (in this case, one of Hergé's early Tintin books at the Brooklyn Public Library). More interestingly, she notes, is that the Times was given access and accordingly republished challenges from BPL patrons and other community members. Quite astutely, Jessamyn recognizes that the patrons' addresses are removed but their names and City/State information are published. If your name is, for example, [name redacted], redacting your address doesn't really protect your anonymity. I'm curious what the balance is between patron privacy and making municipal records available. It's a good question that doesn't have an incredibly straightforward answer. My first concern was about whether BPL had kept the challenge correspondence beyond the mandated dates in the New York State records schedules. After doing some digging, on the New York State Archives' website, I came across Schedule MI-1 ("
  • Google Message Discovery

    Amidst this week of notorious hoaxes, Google has launched Google Message Discovery as an enterprise-focused add on for its Google Apps platform. Google Message Discovery goes well beyond a simple and reliable e-mail backup system and provides three key features of interest to records managers: Content-addressable storage for electronic mail stored immediately upon sending or retrieval Creating explicit retention policies based upon time Compliance with relevant laws and best practices Straightforward discovery for any use, regardless if internal or concerning litigation Google Message Discovery, as well as other related offerings such as e-mail security, clearly has its origins in Google's acquisition of Postini last year. Postini isn't some startup with dubious or perpetually beta offerings (e.g. Dodgeball or GrandCentral); some of their better known clients include BASF and Merrill Lynch. At $25 per user per year, the service seems to be an incredible steal.