Some States make the public information about registered voters more easily accessible than the public information about convicted sex offenders.   Arkansas ... Colorado .... Connecticut ... Delaware ... Florida ... Michigan ... Ohio ... Oklahoma ... Rhode Island
       Since the operators of sex offender registry websites (herein referred to as “bureaucrats”) easily obtain the data supplied to them from law enforcement agencies, they do not experience the difficulties private webmasters face in obtaining the data in bulk from the sex offender registry websites.
       The easier it is to download and update the data, the more often the private website operator will do so.
       Private websites have the advantage that search engines can crawl the static HTML pages and make the information more easily available to persons who would not have thought to visit the State sex offender regsitry website. These web surfers will make important discoveries.
       The Georgia registry is an example of how the bureaucrats make the data easily available for download. While there is no legal requirement to include notices and disclaimers similar to the ones posted on State websites, these notices add value to the private website and there is little reason not to include them. These notices will probably not reduce ad revenue, and making money is the objective of the commercial websites. Webmasters downloading the Florida data see a request, asking them to review a .pdf containing a further recommendation that two such notices be included. Bureaucrats should review these techniques when developing their own solutions.
       Bureaucrats must, of course, consider their State’s laws when deciding on solutions. The Arizona website is an example of how State law influences the provision of data. Bureaucrats have no control over State laws and must obey them.
       It is my own experience that the easiest format for downloading the registry data is the .csv file, with either column headers or a README file accompanying the .csv file to define the columns, or both. All the columns have potential value, as they can be translated into grammatical text that the search engines will eat up, when evaluating the value of website pages. The Florida download even includes the URL of the registrant photo, which the webmaster can convert into a download link. I have downloaded large numbers of such photos using utilities such as curl and wget and then uploaded them onto the website,
       I have seen numerous registry websites warning that conclusive identification cannot be established without fingerprint comparison, but I have seen none that provide images of the fingerprints.
       The downloadable file should include the URL of the individual detail page on the registry website. Webmasters can convert that into a link which their visitors can click to see the latest information.
       The name should be split into parts so it can be sorted by surname. The full date of birth (not only the year) allows for inclusion on and of course this depends on State law.
       Citizens who want their sex offender registry information to be more easily obtainable should get in touch with “their” elected officials (governor, state legislators and attorney general) and the registry website operators. Do not tell me because I cannot help you.

If you want your State’s data to be added to you may contact me at

Tom Alciere
PO Box 106
Nashua NH 03061