How to find Data that has disappeared on the Web

New on RoGGKenya. On the example of the deleted website of the Constituencies Development Fund we demonstrate how you can find data that was once published on this site. You can do this via search engines like Google or – months and years later – with the engines of archive.org. Read our page in the Web search hints section of RoGGKenya.org. A website is offline. But you can still find a lot.

A Website is offline – but you can still find a lot

It happens not too rarely: An official website (for example, the CDF website) has gone offline. After the CDF board was reborn as the NG-CDF (the National Government Constituencies Development Fund) www.cdf.go.ke was taken offline to make room for a new one. Everything disappeared. Everything? Not quite. With a little search engine tweaking and a web archive site, you can still find a lot. We show you how, in this step by step guide. Continue reading “A Website is offline – but you can still find a lot”

How to monitor Changes in Web Pages

Be notified if something changes on a web page that is important for your reporting.

Examples

  • You want to be notified when the Auditor General starts publishing the 2014/2o15 county reports on his website. As soon as this happens, on this page: http://kenao.go.ke/index.php/reports/cat_view/2-reports/11-county-governments a new folder for these reports should show up.
  • You want to be notified if a report for a specific county has been uploaded. There will be a web page like this one for the preceding year http://kenao.go.ke/index.php/reports/cat_view/2-reports/11-county-governments/79-county-government-reports-2014 there, a new county name will appear. The notification page will carry the county name(s). According to the new Public Audit Act the Auditor General must publicize each report on his website within three weeks after submitting it. (->Details about this)
  • More Examples for useful notifications: The hansards download page of your County Assembly, the general download page of your County Executive or its page for downloading public tender notices. If you target these pages on the respective websites you will be notified as as soon as something substantial changes on the page.
This is how to do it
screenshot of OAG web page
Useful to monitor: Here a new folder will show up as soon as the Auditor General starts publicising the reports for the financial year 2014 / 15

It is simple.

  • Go to the web page you want to monitor.
  • Mark and copy its URL / web address (on a computer, use the shortcut ctrl+c) into the temporary storage.
  • Surf to changedetection.com
  • Copy the web address into the respective field.
  • Fill the other field with your mail address and submit the request.
  • On the next page you can choose some options like frequency of notifications. Or restrict the notification request to just the one word you are looking for.
  • Submit.
  • Confirm your mail address with the code they sent to you and choose a password. This will save you time if you log in to create other notification requests.

Done.

To the best of our knowledge changedetection.com does not abuse your mail address by spamming you.

You will now get notified if anything changes on the particular website you want to monitor.

Note: There is a delay of a few hours up to one day before you get the notification.

The notification mails will contain a link to a website that shows you what is new on that page (yellow) or what has been deleted (words struck). So you can decide very quickly if this is of use for you or not.

Search-Hints

When you go digital with your journalistic research these hints may be useful: