Web Integrity Project

Our mission is to monitor changes to government websites, holding our government accountable by revealing shifts in public information and access to Web resources, as well as changes in stated policies and priorities. We work with journalists to make our findings public, and we produce policy analyses to evaluate and recommend changes to Web governance practices and help ensure access to valuable Web resources. Read more about our work and follow @SunWebIntegrity for updates. Contact us securely over Signal for any tips: 443-607-2067.

The Web Integrity Project builds on the collective work that our co-founders help lead in their roles on the Environmental Data and Governance Initiative’s Website Monitoring Team, which tracks and reports on changes to federal environmental, climate, and energy Web resources.

Our Work

Monitoring Federal Websites

Our reports documenting changes in content and access to resources on federal websites, with an initial focus on health and healthcare and immigration.

Web Governance    Policy

We’re developing frameworks for understanding website changes and policy analyses, to work toward improved laws, regulations, and guidance that ensure continued access to public Web resources.

Gov404: WIP’s Censorship Tracker

The Gov404 Tracker aggregates and verifies the most significant cases of censorship and information removals from federal websites since November 2016.

Blog Posts

Farewell and Thanks from the Web Integrity Project (1/2/2020) - When Sunlight launched the Web Integrity Project (WIP) almost two years ago, we created an innovative way to hold federal agencies to account for the content on their websites, as envisioned by our founding supporters, Toly Rinberg, Andrew Bergman, and Rachel Bergman.  Fast forward to today, and WIP monitors tens of thousands of federal government… Read More
Massachusetts case may give new teeth to the Information Quality Act (12/30/2019) - Litigation brought by NGOs could transform the IQA from a weapon for industry groups and conspiracy theorists into a bulwark against government misinformation An obscure federal law that sets minimum standards for information disseminated by federal agencies may be getting an unlikely new life, after years as a weapon of big business. If the lawsuit… Read More
Changes to Department of Labor and Healthcare.gov websites foreshadowed formal LGBTQ policy shifts (11/21/2019) - Our  newest report is a deep dive into how federal web messaging related to the LGBTQ community has evolved under the Trump administration. The report noted a reduction in information specific to the LGBTQ community and changes in language usage related to freighted terms like “gender” and “sex,"” as well as a marked increase in… Read More
New Web Integrity Project report documents changes to LGBTQ-related web content under the Trump Administration (11/21/2019) - Since President Trump’s inauguration, his administration has made numerous policy changes that may affect the rights and lives of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) people, including increasing emphasis on religious freedom and conscience protections, rolling back Obama-era protections for transgender populations, and reducing efforts to increase data coverage of LGBTQ populations in federal… Read More
The Congressional Budget Justification Transparency Act would help the public stay informed about how their tax dollars are spent (10/31/2019) - The Sunlight Foundation is supporting a piece of bipartisan legislation that will help make the federal government’s spending choices a bit less opaque by mandating the centralization of important budget documents. It’s one that has us at the Web Integrity Project particularly excited, because it’s all focused on our favorite thing: the federal web.  When… Read More
A ‘Huge Loss’ or a Skewed Dataset? (10/22/2019) - Diverging opinions about the National Registry of Evidence Based Programs and Practices do not undercut the need for agencies to engage in proper web governance when removing resources. The homepage of the National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (NREPP) website as captured by the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine on July 22, 2018.  The Substance… Read More
Recent SAMHSA website overhaul likely left users confused, frustrated, and irritated (10/22/2019) - Confusion, frustration, and irritation could be avoided by adopting four key principles when updating government websites. The “Grantee Stories, Tools, & Resources” page from the Center for the Application of Prevention Technologies (CAPT) website as captured by the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine on April 24, 2019. The page, like many others on the CAPT website,… Read More
New Report Reveals Trends in Office of Refugee Resettlement’s Unaccompanied Children Website (10/3/2019) - ORR hardened language about unaccompanied children, removed information about services, and reacted defensively to criticism Children at the ORR facility in Homestead, Florida (Department of Health and Human Services). Since taking office, the Trump administration has made restrictions on immigration a centerpiece of its agenda. In pursuit of that agenda, the administration uses rhetoric that… Read More
ICE Online Detainee Locator Plagued by Problems, Attorneys Say (9/5/2019) - As the Trump administration ramps up arrests of undocumented immigrants, the number of individuals incarcerated on immigration charges has increased nearly 40 percent since 2016, to a record-high daily average of more than 54,000. But even as the need to keep tabs on those being held in the system has never been greater, attorneys and… Read More
Navigating the Wild West of the Federal Web: One Cowboy’s Reflections (8/21/2019) - Sunlight Fellow Reflects on his Summer Wrangling Federal Websites at the Web Integrity Project Over the course of this summer, I joined the WIP team and ventured into the Wild West, otherwise known to the unwary user as the realm of federal government websites. As part of my research on LGBTQ-related webpage changes since the… Read More