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To what extent can sources published on the internet help historians of crime overcome the problems encountered when using printed or manuscript sources alone?

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Introduction

To what extent can sources published on the internet help historians of crime overcome the problems encountered when using printed or manuscript sources alone? By Sarah Kennedy Word Count: 1204 In today's society you can find pretty much anything you want on the internet, ranging from the obscure to that of education value, the internet is also easy to use for most and also easily accessible. You can't go somewhere today without finding an internet caf´┐Ż or somewhere with wireless connections, the internet is the tool for any modern thinking person, but is it useful? There are many reasons as to why internet sources could help anyone, especially a historian researching in a specific area of time or genre, in the case of studying crimes there are now a variety of internet resources that a historian could easily use to be able to overcome the problems of having to use printed materials. One main reason would be because the sources on the internet are far more easy to access then say rare books or manuscripts of cases that they were looking at, this is due to the fact that most of the printed materials that could be used, may not be accessable to the public or the originals could have been lost to name a few examples, like in the Old Bailey database site. ...read more.

Middle

not accessible to someone of the public, There is also an issue of cost when it comes to using printed materials, the internet is more or less free to view whatever materials you would want to, many of which is copies of the printed material you may wish to gain access to, however if you were going to use just printed material or if the internet didn't exist then you might have to pay money for books on crime when you might only need one chapter out of it, whereas if you use the sources on the internet then you can pick and choose what parts you would want to use and discard the others. For example in the case I studied off the Old Bailey website I wanted to look at cases involving homosexuality, I didn't want all of them I only wanted to study one, but if I was using printed material then I would have to read through all the cases from those periods to be able to find exactly what I was looking for and having to read about cases that weren't even to do with my issue, instead of a five second search which showed me exactly what I wanted to find, so using the internet of printed materials would also save a lot of time. ...read more.

Conclusion

Crime historians can easily search the internet for specific crimes that they're researching or specific people or cases such as in the Old Bailey Database and the results will usually come up with more then one thing for what they're looking for therefore giving them a wider variety of information and therefore more knowledge. Using the internet is also less problematic then using just printed materials because you have all your sources in front of you and more instead of having to go from printed source to another, it also gives you access to similar articles and evidence from other websites, such as the OBD shows. Although we managed fine without the internet before it was invented it is a huge benefit to any historian including those studying a history of crime because it will last a lot longer then any printed materials will and because everything you would want to know can be reached and is easier to use then any of the printed materials that one would wish to use to gain information, especially for those studying crime where most records are private and most the time you are unable to view the original sources. ...read more.

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