Philadelphia to post criminal records online

The Unified Judicial System of Pennsylvania will add the Philadelphia criminal index to its online electronic case record system. The comments submitted in advance of the upcoming March 2 hearing reflect the dilemma of maintaining open courts and transparent government while avoiding harm to people, due to inaccuracies in the data. The court’s Notice of Proposed Access Policy details the Court Administration’s reasoning in expanding access while instituting many restrictions, such as limiting birth dates to year of birth and age. This is sure to aggravate false positive name matches.

The Philadelphia Inquirer is reporting on the controversy.

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One thought on “Philadelphia to post criminal records online

  1. It seems odd to me that public records, which are by definition supposed to be open to anyone who wants to see them, would need to be modified before they are put on the internet. Either the information in the records is public, or it is not.

    That the internet makes the records more accessible to the general public is neither here nor there.

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