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When an event occurs, the information about that event goes through a progression of stages where it transforms into different types of information. This is called the information timeline, or information cycle.
As facts are revealed and discussed, the story about that event becomes richer and often more clear. Information usually starts out on informal channels or through mass media. As time progresses, popular sources of information cover the event. Months and years later, scholarly sources of information may discuss the event.
While this is the general timeline from event to recorded knowledge, not all events will merit scholarly research.
NOTE: The section was used under a Creative Commons license. The original information was created by and provided by the librarians at Seminole State College.