FOIA

6 results arranged by date

Attacks on the Press   |   USA

Case in Point

A journalist details one fight over records requests in the United States
By Michael Pell

In December 2010, Robin Gordon faced an ultimatum. She had found that a debt collection company had purchased a $291 tax lien on an apartment she owned in Atlanta, Georgia, after her mortgage company failed to pay a small portion of her Fulton County taxes five years earlier. Now, she could either pay the debt collection company $8,200, a 2,700 percent increase, or the sheriff's office would auction her apartment to pay the debt.

Attacks on the Press   |   USA

Thwarting Freedom of Information

Agencies exploit every loophole to evade disclosure requirements
By Jason Leopold

On December 13, 2016, I filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the FBI seeking a wide range of documents about a series of highly controversial decisions the bureau made in the weeks leading up to the U.S. presidential election that Democratic lawmakers and supporters of Hillary Clinton have claimed shifted support to her opponent, Donald Trump.

Blog   |   USA

Transition to Trump: What Obama's Freedom of Information legacy means for press

As a new presidential administration prepares to take over the U.S., CPJ examines the status of press freedom, including the challenges journalists face from surveillance, harassment, limited transparency, the questioning of libel laws, and other factors.

President Obama signs the Freedom of Information Improvement Act of 2016. Journalists say there are still delays in accessing information. (AFP/Brendan Smialowski)

Blog   |   Hungary

New hurdles for Hungary's press as Orbán restricts FOI requests

Viktor Orbán at a European Parliament debate about Hungary in May. His government has brought in a law that will make it harder for journalists and others to make Freedom of Information Act requests. (AFP/Frederick Florin)

"This is the best thing that has ever happened in Hungary." Katalin Erdélyi, a freedom of information activist, was referring to a ground-breaking website launched in Hungary in 2012. "I was glad because I realized the potential and how it will help me get all the information I longed for," she told me. The website, KiMitTud (WhoKnowsWhat, in English) is a simple online tool that helps average citizens file information requests to public bodies, and to view and comment on other people's requests. "I alone filed around 500 requests since the launch," Erdélyi said.

Blog   |   Nigeria

Nigeria's new FOI law brings celebration, challenges

President Goodluck Jonathan signed a public information bill long in the making. (AP/Bebeto Matthews)

There is a deserved celebration in the Nigerian media over the recently passed Freedom of Information Act, which provides citizens with broad access to public records and information held by a public official or institution.  It is the climax of an 11-year struggle to pass such a law in the Nigerian parliament. Indeed, the call for such a law was first made under military rule, in 1993, when the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Civil Liberties Organisation, and the Media Rights Agenda began to clamor for it.

July 7, 2011 2:05 PM ET

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Blog   |   Iraq, Security, UAE, USA

FOIA needs new muscle behind it, not just promises

The White House says it wants to improve transparency. Greater access to information could prevent deaths of journalists in the field.These are busy days for Freedom of Information. On April 5, the watchdog Web site that knows no borders, WikiLeaks, posted a classified U.S. military video showing U.S. forces firing on Iraqi civilians, killing many, including two Reuters journalists, as well as wounding children. Two days later, the Pentagon posted a redacted U.S. military assessment of the same incident concluding that U.S. troops fired “in accordance with the law of armed conflict and rules of engagement.” The very same day President Obama hailed the scheduled release of a new Open Government Initiative by all Cabinet agencies to improve transparency and compliance with information requests.

April 26, 2010 10:51 AM ET

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6 results