PDF Explanations

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Soft Targets and Crowded Places (ST-CP)
Mass Shooting Prevention and Research Depository

PDF Explanations

—Please be aware that our proprietary software that searches for and vets all PDFs isn’t always completely accurate (what technology is?), which is why we inspect each PDF individually, in other words, we give them the human touch. Therefore, you have our assurance that PDFs you access on this website have a high level of creditability. Be advised that you should never depend on or otherwise take note of any PDFs on this website as being singularly or collectively authoritative in their given subject area. We have considerable confidence in the creditability of the PDFs presented here, however, due diligence corroboration is always suggested. Some (relatively very few) PDFs available on Soft Targets and Crowded Places (ST-CP) have questionable content. We've included them because they're compelling or interesting, but we're not absolutely sure of their creditability. PDFs that fit this description have been prominently labeled as such. Their title, in brackets, will always be preceded with a cautionary or warning statement. Please take note of these statements before absorbing or citing their content. However, it's possible that one or more PDFs on this Website lack the indicated cautionary or warning statement. If you find that to be the case please contact us immediately so we can take corrective action if necessary. Be advised that some PDFs on Soft Targets and Crowded Places (ST-CP) are clearly academic assignments and/or are labeled (usually following their title) "A thesis submitted to the faculty of … in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the/of the …" or something like that. While we haven't programmatically or systematically excluded PDFs with that very low level of expertise, we have rejected most of them for that reason. However, it sometimes makes sense to include these PDFs, because, while they lack expertise and in some cases have numerous typos, they provide an "angle" not found elsewhere. Their title, in brackets, will always identify them for what they are. Please make note of PDFs labeled as such and very carefully digest and ponder their content accordingly. If you believe any such labeled PDF is unworthy of being on Soft Targets and Crowded Places (ST-CP) please contact us immediately so we can take corrective action if necessary.

All PDFs on this Website have been fully scanned using deep scan anti-malware software to ensure they are free of malware. You can download with confidence all PDFs on this website. Malware free means that all PDFs in our Mass Shooting PDF collection contain no harmful software that copies itself to (infects) other devices including, but not necessarily limited to, magnetic tape cassettes, memory chips, electronic cartridges, and magnetic and optical disks, and which destroys data, causes damage, or creates a annoyance or nuisance to the end user.

Some PDFs on this Website are permanently or temporarily hidden*. We hide PDFs based on exhaustive criteria which renders their creditability (fakeness?) questionable or their digital and/or physical address (origin) suspicious. Hidden PDFs are routinely exonerated and returned to unhidden standing, while others are hidden, hence, the flow of PDFs available to you changes constantly. Should you detect irregularities with one or more PDFs unhidden on this Website we implore you to contact us so we can rectify the situation, which, if justified, we will do forthright.

Be advised that, because some content is compelling, we've chosen to save and upload selected newspaper files as PDFs due to their noteworthiness.. However, these files sometimes don't format as PDFs appropriately. However, we've ensured that every one of them, regardless of their presentation, which is dismal in some cases, has content which is completely legible.

In some cases we've used the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), which is the right to access information held by public bodies, to obtain data that is rightly ours (and yours!) to have. We wield that right ever so judiciously, but nonetheless, necessarily in some cases.

Some mass shooting records/reports available on this Website weren’t released specifically for public consumption. Their inherent access complexity and unfriendly characteristics set them apart from other records/reports. For records/reports that weren’t released specifically for public consumption please be advised of the following:
    1. —Some cases have substantial records/reports available, in one instance there are 840 reports available in downloadable zipped folders.
    1. —Records/reports often have file names which are generally meaningless to laypeople (like strings of letters and/or numbers) and are available for download, sometimes in zipped folders.
    1. —In some categories we’ve included only one record/report. Illustrative of this is the case of meetings attended, property receipts, and victim death notifications, where only one report is included because all the others that we have don’t differ in any meaningful way.
    1. —These records/reports are heavily redacted despite the fact that all the blanks (blackened areas) can be easily filled in with data from media outlets and other online sources.

Soft Targets and Crowded Places (ST-CP) prefers PDFs that are highly accessible. PDFs should have accessibility tags to make sure that people who use screen readers and other assistive technologies can read and navigate a PDF using alt text, bookmarks, hyperlinks, tables of contents, and so on. Accessibility tags also make it possible to read the information on different devices, such as large type displays, personal digital assistants (PDAs), and mobile phones. In Microsoft 365 for Windows, Microsoft 365 for Mac, and Office for the web, tags can automatically be added when a file is saved in PDF format so making PDFs accessible is very easy. Regardless, Soft Targets and Crowded Places (ST-CP) does not reject PDFs that are not accessible because by doing so we would be excluding a lot of PDF content. If you need to access a inaccessible PDF on Soft Targets and Crowded Places (ST-CP) and require accessible PDF features please contact us and we will convert it for you.

Most PDF file names, at least those residing online, have meaningless names that don't fully, or even in anyway, tell what they're about. In other words, the file name isn't the title of the document. All of our PDF file names have been converted to the title of the PDF document. Among other things, this allows them to be fully keyword searchable. While we strive to have our PDF file names be verbatim to their document names, that isn't always possible. For instance special characters like '* " / \ < > : | ?' can't be used in file names. However, as an example, when a file name asks a question it's wording most often is telltale. Like "Did the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban Work" obviously had and needs a question mark, we just haven't included it because we can't.

PDFs in some categories require special case title handling. For instance, Columbine  (Columbine High School, Littleton, Colorado, Mass Shooting - April 20, 1999). Due to the fact there are numerous PDFs available for this mass shooting and the fact that there were two perpetrators (which we don't name) we've identified them as perpetrator 1 and perpetrator 2.