From Investigative Reporting Workshop: iFOIA, a free online system to create, send and track federal and state records requests, is now up and running. After nearly a year of project development, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press (RCFP) offered iFOIA to Bloomberg News and NPR for beta testing. Since its official release at the Online News Association Conference on Oct. 17, major newsrooms, including The Washington Post, have hosted representatives from the Reporters Committee for tutorials on how this resource can be used effectively by journalists. Emily Grannis from the Reporters Committee stopped by the Workshop today to give our staff an iFOIA briefing.
iFOIA acts as a cloud service in which journalists can store all of their records requests online, sorted by project. Federal agencies are required to respond to FOIA requests within 20 business days — at which point iFOIA automatically sends users a reminder that they should have received an answer. Furthermore, the system automatically fills in contact information for federal agencies and saves information for state agencies after those are added by the user. The users also have the option to share state agency contact information with the iFOIA community, while still keeping their requests private.
Visit Investigative Reporting Workshop for more.