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Category Archives: Freedom of Information

2017 World Press Freedom Index – tipping point

“The 2017 World Press Freedom Index compiled by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) reflects a world in which attacks on the media have become commonplace and strongmen are on the rise. We have reached the age of post-truth, propaganda, and suppression of freedoms – especially in democracies…RSF’s latest World Press Freedom Index highlights the danger of… Continue Reading

DOJ defends USDA take-down of massive animal abuse database

Follow up to previous postings – Animal welfare information wiped from USDA website and Some animal welfare data removed from USDA site is restored – via Josh Gerstein – Politico – “The Justice Department is mounting a legal defense of one of the most-publicized counter-transparency moves of the new Trump administration: the Agriculture Department’s decision… Continue Reading

GAO deleted operations manual – rescued gov doc

Russ Kick via MemoryHole2 – The Government Accountability Office recently deleted its operations manual. Here it is: altgov2.org/gao-manual/ Continue Reading

AltGov2 – Trump’s Ambassadors: Financial Disclosures

Trump’s Ambassadors: Financial Disclosures by Russ Kick · April 19, 2017 “Nominees for high-level positions have to file financial disclosures and ethics agreements with the Office of Government Ethics. For some reason, the OGE posts these revealing documents for only the highest-paid officials. Ambassadors don’t earn enough to get posted, so their disclosures have to… Continue Reading

HBR – Using Blockchain to Keep Public Data Public

Harvard Business Review – Data is under attack by Brian Forde is senior lecturer for bitcoin and blockchain at the MIT Sloan School of Management “…The Obama administration drastically increased the openness of government data, codifying it with an executive order that made open, machine-readable data the new default for government information, to ensure that we have transparency… Continue Reading

Obama Administration 2016 DOE Transition Books

2016 DOE Transition Books prepared by November 1, 2016, by the former Administration for the Transition Team as required by the Presidential Transition Improvements Act (PTIA) of 2015. MAAdm_TransitionBook1-CorporateOverview2016.pdf (2.34 MB) MAAdm_TransitionBook2-CorporateOverviewApp2016.pdf MAAdm_TransitionBook3-OrganizationOverviews2016.pdf(5.55 MB) Slides from Secretary Moniz’s Fiscal Year 2017 Budget Presentation FY 2017 Budget Request Before the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee… Continue Reading

White House cancels Open.gov

TIME: “…White House officials said the Administration is ending the contract for Open.gov, the Obama-era site that hosted the visitor records along with staff financial disclosures, salaries, and appointments. An official said it would save $70,000 through 2020 [emphasis added] and that the removed disclosures, salaries and appointments would be integrated into WhiteHouse.gov in the… Continue Reading

Killer Apps: Vanishing Messages, Encrypted Communications, and Challenges to Freedom of Information Laws When Public Officials “Go Dark”

Stewart, Daxton, Killer Apps: Vanishing Messages, Encrypted Communications, and Challenges to Freedom of Information Laws When Public Officials “Go Dark” (April 13, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract= “In the early weeks of the new presidential administration, White House staffers were communicating among themselves and leaking to journalists using apps such as Signal and Confide, which… Continue Reading

Search Database of Millions of Previously Classified Documents on Industrial Poisons

“Columbia University’s Center for the History and Ethics of Public Health, located at its Mailman School of Public Health, and the City University of New York’s Graduate Center are proud to jointly present Toxic Docs. This dataset and website contain millions of pages of previously secret documents about toxic substances. They include secret internal memoranda,… Continue Reading

Trump Visitor Logs Subject to FOIA Lawsuit

“The National Security Archive, together with the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University and the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), are filing a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security for the release of the White House visitor logs today, April 10, in the federal District… Continue Reading

New Website Lets You Fax Art to Congress to Save the NEA

Artsy Editorial – “In the months since President Donald Trump took office, members of Congress have watched their phone lines reach capacity and their email inboxes overflow as constituents voice their displeasure with the administration’s policies and appointees… Now, a new website is giving citizens a way to get artistic with their political grievances. Artifax… Continue Reading

Open Access Innovations Are Impacting Academic Publishing

Chronicle of Higher Education: “Open-access advocates have had several successes in the past few weeks. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation started its own open-access publishing platform, which the European Commission may replicate. And librarians attending the Association of College and Research Libraries conference in March were glad to hear that the Open Access Button,… Continue Reading