There is a lot of talk about what has come to be known as “Web 2.0”, but not much in the way of it being a new goldmine for public record searching. Web 2.0 can be loosely defined as the collaborative web. Web content is no longer in the hands of a few techie web masters and a handful of search engines. Web content is now created by the masses for the masses.
With the growing popularity of blogs, social network sites and collaborative projects like Wikipedia, the new web ( Web 2.0 ) is being created by anyone with an internet connection. Some of the very people who complain about the dangers of traditional public record access and their names and phone numbers being published in online white pages are the same people who have no trouble posting all types of information about themselves in blogs; online communities and social network sites, like MySpace, Friendster and FaceBook. As a result, Web 2.0 is fast becoming a goldmine for a new form of public record searching.
Old public record sources will always be the best way to find detailed information like civil and criminal records and property assessor records; but Web 2.0 sites will be the place to search to find out all sorts of personal information like, biographical records; resumes and employment history; educational background; interests and hobbies and, yes, even pictures. This is the type of personal information and psychological insights that traditional public record sources will never be able to match.
Just as free online classifieds are making traditional newspaper classifieds obsolete and mass journalism and blogging are destroying the big news outlets; the personal content of Web 2.0 could make paid databases a thing of the past. Take notice, Accurint et. al.