Not certain I want to jump in on this string but I will put my 2 cents in.
I always thought that grey literature was used for documents that were
generally unavailable due to limited publishing. The classic case is government
agencies using internally produced reports or documents within a document. The
document is available to internal staff but is often difficult (or impossible)
to get copies of. May be changing in these modern days of the internet (and
theortetically much more documentation being made available by government).
Not certain what bearing this has on the grey - I am surprised people thought
it any way offensive. However, I never would have thought that Wingspan was
grey literature either as it was generally available and published for
> Date: Fri, 5 Mar 2010 05:35:30 +1100
> Subject: [Birding-Aus] Grey literature
> It seems that Chris Sanderson's reference to non peer reviewed publications
> as "grey literature" struck a nerve, with many people interpreting "grey" as
> meaning something like "shady". A quick Googling of the term revealed many
> pages defining and using the term, including Wikipedia.
> It appears that not only is the term well established and widespread, but
> there are actually journals about it (The Grey Journal, and yes, it's peer
> reviewed) and a Grey Literature International Steering Committee (GLISC),
> "which was established in 2006 after the 7th International Conference on Grey
> Literature (GL7)".
> One site acknowledges that the term "brings connotations of bleakness,
> apathy, indifference, and questionable authority to mind", but claims it has
> had its current meaning since the 1920s.
> So I guess we can't complain about its use. However, while there are many
> sites defining it as Chris does, most have a different definition. E.g.
> "information that is not searchable or accessible through conventional search
> engines or subject directories and is not generally produced by commercial
> publishing organisations".
> Can anyone explain why there are two definitions? Is one just a subset of
> the other (i.e. all peer reviewed publications are searchable)? And by the
> narrower definition, are Wingspan and TBO grey literature or not? Are they
> Some (grey) references:
> Peter Shute
> Sent using BlackBerry
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