FOI and Open Government News
1 October 2014 - There had been plenty of grumbling over the University of Illinois's decision to revoke a job offer to Prof. Steven G. Salaita, who gained notoriety for incendiary tweets about Israel. Continue>>>
1 October 2014 - U.S. intelligence agents have broad authority to spy on U.S. companies as long as they are 'believed to have some relationship with foreign organizations or persons' - a description that could conceivably apply to any company with foreign shareholders, subsidiaries, or even employees. Continue>>>
1 October 2014 - Tim Berners-Lee claims our internet freedom in under threat by governments and corporations that don't have the public's interest at heart and has called for a bill of rights to be introduced to ensure users' privacy. Continue>>>
1 October 2014 - The State Department has taken more than two years to turn over documents WND sought through a Freedom of Information Act request regarding mysterious transactions at an expensive European luxury hotel funded by U.S. taxpayers. Continue>>>
1 October 2014 - An unprecedented number of individuals and organizations are finding ways to explore, interpret and use Open Data. Public agencies are hosting Open Data events such as meetups, hackathons and data dives. Continue>>>
1 October 2014 - Soon you'll be able to find out where the federal government flies drones and what it does with the data according to a report fromThe Washington Post.The White House is getting ready to send out an order to make agencies open up data on where they fly drones and what happens to all of the data they collect. Continue>>>
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FOI Summit Wrap-up and All Things Summit
Knight FOI Fund
The Knight FOI Fund offers financial support in open government lawsuits, fueling and assisting the pursuit of important FOI cases. The need arose from the realization that the economic crisis and the evolution of the news media has resulted in declining levels of FOI advocacy. Continue > >
Who We Are & What We Do
We are a nonpartisan alliance of state and regional affiliates promoting collaboration, education & advocacy for open government, transparency and freedom of information. We award grants, publish FOI and FOIA news, provide transparency education and support to state and local governments, supply state sample FOIA request letters and Federal FOIA request letters. Continue >>
SAVE THE DATE: Oct. 23-24
The National Freedom of Information Coalition's annual conference and FOI summit is scheduled for October 23-24 in beautiful St. Petersburg, Florida at the Poynter Institute for Media Studies. This year's Fall summit is hosted by the Florida First Amendment Foundation. The annual meeting brings together state and regional FOI coalitions and friends of open government. Tom Blanton, Director of the National Security Archive at George Washington University is the keynote speaker. Registration is $125. Information on previous annual FOI summits can be viewed here. Learn more...
Using a litigation grant from the National Freedom of Information Coalition’s Knight FOI Fund, a coalition of news media companies –the Carroll County Times, Washington Post, Baltimore Sun and Scripps Media’s WMAR-TV—successfully challenged the Carroll County (MD) Board of Commissioners under Maryland’s Public Information Act (MPIA).
County commissioners were ordered by a judge to produce all email distribution lists that they use to send messages to select groups of their supporters. The lawsuit began after a February 2013 request to the commissioners by Carroll County Times journalist, Christian Alexandersen, for copies of the commissioners' email distribution lists. Continue>>>
NFOIC’s third biennial joint survey with the New York-based Media Law Resource Center (MLRC) showed a continuation of trends that are troubling to open government advocates. Just as similar informal surveys in 2009 and 2011 had, the 2013 Open Government Survey found a substantial decline over the last two to five years in the amount of resources devoted by media organizations to FOIA and open government issues.
FOLLOWING THE MONEY 2014 - How the 50 States Rate in Providing Online Access to Government Spending Data
U.S. PIRG Education Fund’s fifth annual evaluation of state transparency websites finds that states are making progress toward comprehensive, one-stop, one-click transparency and accountability for state government spending. Over the past year, new states have opened the books on public spending and several states have adopted new practices to further expand citizens’ access to critical spending information.