Have you ever heard of grey literature? I must confess that I hadn't, until recently. Let me enlighten you...
Grey literature is the information or research created by people e.g. academics or companies e.g. government, businesses, charities, that remains unpublished or not published in commercial form.
Good examples of grey literature include the following:
- Theses and dissertations
- Research reports and studies (unpublished)
- Government reports and policy statements
- Conference proceedings, meeting minutes, memorandums
- Market research
- Factsheets, bulletins and newsletters
- Technical reports and specifications
- Blogs (this article!) emails and tweets, facebook posts
- Clinical trails and datasets
- Grey literature implies written items, but it can also refer to video footage, presentations, items on YouTube etc.
One of the good things about Grey Literature is that it can appear in this form first, then progress onto commercially published formats. It's handy if you're researching or studying. You'll find lots of it at your local library.