Subject: LostDocs Submission Form
Date: Mon, 8 Feb 2010 13:35:17 -0500

Thank you for your submission. Here is a copy of your submission for reporting fugitive documents.
Contact Information
Name: John Stevenson
Depository Library Number: 0087
Fugitive Document Information
Publication Title: Better coordination of transportation and housing programs : to promote affordable housing near transit
Format: online
Other (please describe): Online version of printed title lacking item number in CGP SYS=000626693 which apparently won\’t be distributed to FDLP libraries.
SuDoc Number: TD 7.2:H 81
Item Number: 0982-H-02
Sub/Series Title:  
Surrogate Information: No file was uploaded

Editor’s Note: This entry is good fodder for a discussion of what exactly is a fugitive document. Normally we’d call this a false positive because 1) an item for the electronic record exists in the Catalog of Government Publications (CGP) and 2) Under most circumstances we don’t know whether a physical copy was produced and 3) An entry in the CGP is usually our only way of knowing whether GPO has heard of a given item.

In this instance, a corresponding record for the print item sans an item number makes it appear that GPO did acquire at least one print copy but for whatever reason did not distribute to regionals and selecting libraries. As this item was produced tangibly and appears to be solidly in the scope of the FDLP, this seems odd. Additionally, the published date is August 2008 and the date in the 008 field of the tangible record is October 2008, so it seems unlikely the title had gone out of print at the time GPO acquired it.

We at FGI don’t insist that GPO distribute a tangible item when that item is solely available in an online format, but when a tangible item is available and fits the program, it should be distributed.  GPO’s policy on dissemination, SOD 301, states (emphasis mine), “When the product is available both online and in a tangible format, GPO will disseminate the online version to depository libraries. Tangible versions will be offered as well, budget permitting.” Hopefully this means that most of the time the budget will permit this. If an item wasn’t distributed for budget reasons, GPO should note this in the print record.

To reflect the ambiguity this report represents, we’re going to tag it as a “false positive” in honor of the preexisting print and online records and  “explanation needed” to reflect the fact that it’s not obvious why this report was not distributed in paper format.

Tags: , , ,