In addition to the traditional keyword search, FiscalNote offers advanced options, including boolean modifiers, that can help you form more specific queries to find more relevant results.
Quotes indicate that the results should include the exact words in the exact order. Capitalization and punctuation are ignored, unless the punctuation is a special symbol. If words such as “and” or “or” are included within quotes, they are treated as normal search terms. You can use quotes in addition to other modifiers.
- “sales tax” == “Sales TAX”
- “auto insurance” OR “car insurance”
- “natural gas leak” == “natural gas leaks”
As in most search engines, this operator is the default in our search. When searching two terms, you can separate those terms with the upper-case word AND. However, the AND is implicit, and the search function assumes that there is an AND between them. You can think of this as a union, with each additional term restricting the set of results further. An AND inserted inside quotes will not act as a boolean operator, but rather as the word and.
- health insurance (the AND is implied)
- property tax == property AND tax ≠≠ “property” AND “tax”
- infrastructure AND bridge
- “renewable energy” AND “solar panels”
The OR operator yields results with at least one of the terms, therefore, broadening the search results. All documents with at least one matching term are returned.
- “sales tax” OR “value added tax”
- fracking OR fracturing
- petroleum OR oil
The search result will exclude a particular term immediately after the operator NOT. The (-) and (!) operators can be used to indicate NOT. The NOT operator is a very powerful term because it will exclude any document that contains the word after NOT. It should be used carefully.
- energy NOT electricity
- insurance NOT “life insurance”
- pet NOT cat NOT dog == pet -cat -dog
Parenthesis are best utilized for complex searches to combine terms and modifiers. They are used to indicate the precedence of application of the boolean operators, similar to the distributive property in multiplication. Think of PEMDAS!
- (health insurance) == health insurance
- (health OR life) AND insurance == (health OR life) insurance
- banking OR (financial regulation) ≠≠ (banking OR financial) regulation
The proximity operator can be used to find sets of words within a specified proximity to or distance from one another. It is used to return results containing words in exact succession or throughout a piece of text.
- “Health insurance”~5
- Returns texts with the words “health” and “insurance” within 5 words of each other
- Ensure no space between quotation mark and tilda
- Best Practices:
- ~5 -~10: Utilize small proximities for terms with limited variations.
- ~20 -~100: Utilize large proximities for broad searches that may span a paragraph.