Information is the currency of democracy (Quotation)

From Thomas Jefferson Encyclopedia

Quotation: "Information is the currency of democracy."


  1. "Information is the currency of democracies."

Sources consulted: Searching on the phrase "currency of democracy"

  1. Monticello website
  2. Ford's Works of Thomas Jefferson
  3. L&B (CD-ROM version)
  4. UVA EText Jefferson Digital Archive: Jeffersonian Cyclopedia, Thomas Jefferson on Politics and Government, Texts by or to Thomas Jefferson from the Modern English Collection
  5. Thomas Jefferson Papers at the Library of Congress
  6. Thomas Jefferson Retirement Papers
  7. Quotable Jefferson (searching in the index under "information")
  8. Quotations

Earliest known appearance in print: 1971[1][2]

Other attributions: Ralph Nader

Status: We currently have no evidence to confirm that Thomas Jefferson ever said or wrote, "Information is the currency of democracy."

Comments: The earliest known attribution to Thomas Jefferson (in print) is 1991,[3] although this may have happened earlier. Print sources more commonly attribute this quotation to Ralph Nader.


  1. Proc. Annual Newspaper Guild Convention (s.n., 1971), 8.
  2. To establish the earliest appearance of this phrase in print, the following sources were searched for the phrase, "information is the currency of democracy": Google Books, Google Scholar,, Internet Archive, America's Historical Newspapers, American Broadsides and Ephemera Series I, Early American Imprints Series I and II, Early English Books Online, Eighteenth Century Collections Online, 19th Century U.S. Newspapers, American Periodicals Series Online, JSTOR.
  3. United States General Accounting Office, U.S. Communications Policy: Issues for the 1990s: Panelists' Remarks (Washington, D.C.: U.S. General Accounting Office, 1991), 146.

See Also

Further Sources