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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Speechwriting in Perspective: A Brief Guide to Effective and Persuasive Communication

Speechwriting in Perspective: A Brief Guide to Effective and Persuasive Communication

Date: April 12, 2007
Creator: Neale, Thomas H.
Description: This report seeks to provide some guidance for congressional staff on the principles and practice of speechwriting. The suggestions offered herein, when combined with practice, attention to audience and occasion, and, most importantly, the Member’s attitudes, convictions, and style, can help create a speech that can be a “seamless garment” when delivered by the Member.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Speechwriting in Perspective: A Brief Guide to Effective and Persuasive Communication

Speechwriting in Perspective: A Brief Guide to Effective and Persuasive Communication

Date: February 25, 1998
Creator: Neale, Thomas H.
Description: “Rhetoric,” wrote Aristotle, “is the power of determining in a particular case what are the available means of persuasion.” This report reviews some effective means for the rhetoric of persuasive communication in speeches written by congressional staff for Senators and Representatives.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Speechwriting in Perspective: A Brief Guide to Effective and Persuasive Communication

Speechwriting in Perspective: A Brief Guide to Effective and Persuasive Communication

Date: February 25, 1998
Creator: Neale, Thomas H.
Description: “Rhetoric,” wrote Aristotle, “is the power of determining in a particular case what are the available means of persuasion.” This report reviews some effective means for the rhetoric of persuasive communication in speeches written by congressional staff for Senators and Representatives.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Obscenity and Indecency: Constitutional Principles and Federal Statutes

Obscenity and Indecency: Constitutional Principles and Federal Statutes

Date: May 2, 2003
Creator: Cohen, Henry
Description: This report examines federal law regarding obscenity and indecency. The First Amendment provides: “Congress shall make no law... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.” In general, the First Amendment protects pornography, with this term being used to mean any erotic material. The Supreme Court, however, has held that the First Amendment does not protect two types of pornography: obscenity and child pornography. Consequently, they may be banned on the basis of their content, and federal law prohibits the mailing of obscenity, as well as its transport or receipt in interstate or foreign commerce.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Social Media in the House of Representatives: Frequently Asked Questions

Social Media in the House of Representatives: Frequently Asked Questions

Date: April 16, 2014
Creator: Straus, Jacob R. & Glassman, Matthew E.
Description: This report answers several questions about the regulation of social media accounts in the House of Representatives.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Advertising by the Federal Government: An Overview

Advertising by the Federal Government: An Overview

Date: June 23, 2014
Creator: Kosar, Kevin R.
Description: This report discusses government advertising that can be controversial if it conflicts with citizens' views about the proper role of government.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Social Media in the House of Representatives: Frequently Asked Questions

Social Media in the House of Representatives: Frequently Asked Questions

Date: April 2, 2015
Creator: Straus, Jacob R. & Glassman, Matthew E.
Description: This report answers several questions about the regulation of social media accounts in the House of Representatives, as social media accounts for official representational duties have increased.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Social Media in the House of Representatives: Frequently Asked Questions

Social Media in the House of Representatives: Frequently Asked Questions

Date: April 22, 2015
Creator: Straus, Jacob R. & Glassman, Matthew E.
Description: This report answers several questions about the regulation of social media accounts in the House of Representatives.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Journalists' Privilege: Overview of the Law and Legislation in the 110th and 111th Congresses

Journalists' Privilege: Overview of the Law and Legislation in the 110th and 111th Congresses

Date: November 10, 2009
Creator: Cohen, Henry & Ruane, Kathleen Ann
Description: This report gives an overview of the law regarding journalistic privilege. Included are the responses of the 110th and 111th Congresses regarding the law.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Changing Postal ZIP Code Boundaries

Changing Postal ZIP Code Boundaries

Date: June 23, 2006
Creator: Stevens, Nye
Description: This report discusses the changing of ZIP Code system and the implications of such an action. The process places responsibility on district managers, rather than local postmasters, to review requests for boundary adjustment, to evaluate costs and benefits of alternative solutions to identified problems, and to provide a decision within 60 days.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Federal Advertising Law: An Overview

Federal Advertising Law: An Overview

Date: February 9, 1998
Creator: Cohen, Henry
Description: This report provides a brief overview of federal law with respect to five selected advertising issues: alcohol advertising, tobacco advertising, the Federal Trade Commission Act, advertising by mail, and advertising by telephone. There are numerous federal statutes regulating advertising that do not fit within any of these categories; as random examples, the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act requires disclosures in advertisements for prescription drugs ; the Truth in Lending Act governs the advertising of consumer credit ; and a federal criminal statute makes it illegal falsely to convey in an advertisement that a business is connected with a federal agency.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Publishing Scientific Papers with Potential Security Risks: Issues for Congress

Publishing Scientific Papers with Potential Security Risks: Issues for Congress

Date: July 12, 2012
Creator: Gottron, Frank & Shea, Dana A.
Description: This report discusses the publication of federally-funded research results including positive aspects (wide dissemination that may drive innovation, job creation, technology development, and the advance of science), and the negatives (that some research results could also be used for malicious purposes). This report describes the underlying controversy, the potential benefits and harms of publishing these manuscripts, the actions taken by domestic and international stakeholders, and options to improve the way research is handled to minimize security concerns.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Post Office and Retail Postal Facility Closures: Overview and Issues for Congress

Post Office and Retail Postal Facility Closures: Overview and Issues for Congress

Date: July 23, 2009
Creator: Kosar, Kevin R.
Description: The United States Postal Service (USPS) announced in May 2009 that it was considering the closure of 3,105 of its 4,851 post office branches and stations. Since the original announcement, the USPS has indicated that the number of possible closures may be more than 3,200. This report provides (1) information on this recent announcement; (2) historical data on the number of post offices and other retail postal facilities; (3) an explanation of the legal authorities relevant to retail postal facility closures; (4) a review of the retail postal facility closure processes, including data on public appeals of closures, and H.R. 658's proposed alterations to the processes; and (5) a concluding discussion that suggests observations and possible issues for Congress.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Post Office and Retail Postal Facility Closures: Overview and Issues for Congress

Post Office and Retail Postal Facility Closures: Overview and Issues for Congress

Date: July 23, 2009
Creator: Kosar, Kevin R.
Description: This report provides information on the announcement that the United States Postal Service was considering the closure of 3,105 branches; historical data on the number of post offices and other retail postal facilities; an explanation of the legal authorities relevant to retail postal facility closures; a review of the retail postal facility closure processes, including data on public appeals of closures, and H.R. 658's proposed alterations to the processes; and a concluding discussion that suggests observations and possible issues for Congress.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Naming Post Offices Through Legislation

Naming Post Offices Through Legislation

Date: July 3, 2003
Creator: Stevens, Nye
Description: This report describes how the practice of naming post offices through public law originated and how it is commonly done today. House and Senate practices for approving such legislation, and procedures followed by the U.S. Postal Service in organizing a dedication ceremony, are also described.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Open Access Publishing and Citation Archives: Background and Controversy

Open Access Publishing and Citation Archives: Background and Controversy

Date: May 5, 2006
Creator: Knezo, Genevieve J.
Description: This report begins with an inventory of basic information: definitions and guides to histories of the growth of open access publishing and citation archives and descriptions of selected major open access activities. It moves on to summarize major points of difference between proponents and opponents of nongovernmental open access publishing and databases, and then highlights federal, including National Institutes of Health (NIH), open access activities and contentious issues surrounding these developments. The report also briefly describes open access developments in the United Kingdom (where a number of governmental and nongovernmental initiatives have occurred) and in the international arena. Finally, controversial issues which could receive attention in the 109th Congress are summarized.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The U.S. Newspaper Industry in Transition

The U.S. Newspaper Industry in Transition

Date: September 9, 2010
Creator: Kirchoff, Suzanne M.
Description: This report analyzes the current crises that the U.S. newspaper industry is facing in light of the recent economic downturn and the increasing number of readers who turn to the Internet for their news instead of to traditional media. Congress has begun debating whether the financial problems in the newspaper industry pose a public policy issue that warrants federal action.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
English as the Official Language of the United States: Legal Background

English as the Official Language of the United States: Legal Background

Date: December 23, 2010
Creator: Feder, Jody
Description: For over a decade, legislation that would either declare English the official language of the United States government or that would oppose such declarations has been introduced in Congress. This report discusses the legal effect of some of these congressional proposals, as well as current federal policy on foreign language assistance, the constitutional law implications of official English proposals, and legal issues regarding state laws on official English.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The First Responder Network (FirstNet) and Next-Generation Communications for Public Safety: Issues for Congress

The First Responder Network (FirstNet) and Next-Generation Communications for Public Safety: Issues for Congress

Date: March 12, 2014
Creator: Moore, Linda K.
Description: This report provides and introduction to key provisions in the Spectrum Act to improve public safety communications and discusses planning authority, state and local participation, federal governance and other issues regarding the evolving network technologies.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The First Responder Network (FirstNet) and Next-Generation Communications for Public Safety: Issues for Congress

The First Responder Network (FirstNet) and Next-Generation Communications for Public Safety: Issues for Congress

Date: February 27, 2015
Creator: Moore, Linda K.
Description: This report provides and introduction to key provisions in the Spectrum Act to improve public safety communications and discusses planning authority, state and local participation, federal governance and other issues regarding the evolving network technologies.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Cybersecurity and Information Sharing: Comparison of H.R. 1560 and H.R. 1731

Cybersecurity and Information Sharing: Comparison of H.R. 1560 and H.R. 1731

Date: April 20, 2015
Creator: Fischer, Eric A.
Description: This report compares provisions in two bills in the House of Representatives that address information sharing and related activities in cybersecurity.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The FCC's Rules and Policies Regarding Media Ownership, Attribution, and Ownership Diversity

The FCC's Rules and Policies Regarding Media Ownership, Attribution, and Ownership Diversity

Date: March 12, 2015
Creator: Scherer, Dana A.
Description: This report discusses the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) broadcast media ownership rules, which restrict the number of media outlets that a single entity may own or control. Its attribution rules define which relationships the FCC counts as ownership. In 2004 and again in 2011, the U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit, directed the FCC to review its broadcast ownership diversity policies in conjunction with the media ownership rules.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act: Overview and Issues for Congress

The Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act: Overview and Issues for Congress

Date: December 14, 2009
Creator: Kosar, Kevin R.
Description: This report describes Congress's pursuit of postal reform, and summarizes the major provisions of the new postal reform law. The report also suggests PAEA-related oversight issues for Congress. President George W. Bush signed the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (PAEA; P.L. 109-435; 120 Stat. 3198) on December 20, 2006. The PAEA was the first broad revision of the 1970 statute that replaced the U.S. Post Office with the U.S. Postal Service (USPS), a self-supporting, independent agency of the executive branch.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Congressional Printing: Background and Issues for Congress

Congressional Printing: Background and Issues for Congress

Date: November 5, 2009
Creator: Petersen, R. E.
Description: This report provides an overview and analysis of issues related to the processing and distribution of congressional information by the Government Printing Office. Subsequent sections address several issues, including funding congressional printing, printing authorizations, current printing practices, and options for Congress. Finally, the report provides congressional printing appropriations, production, and distribution data in a number of tables.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department