IRE Radio Podcast | BONUS: The State of the FOIA

It’s been 50 years since the federal Freedom of Information Act was signed into law. A lot’s happened since then – not all of it good for the press. We’re calling this bonus episode “The State of the FOIA” because, over the next 30 minutes, we’ll be talking to three experts to figure out what…

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Moving the needle on freedom of information – your insights needed for Knight study

The Knight Foundation wants to know what you think about the state of access to public records at the federal and state/local levels. Anyone interested in FOI – journalists, access professionals, librarians and others – are invited to share their thoughts. The online survey takes about 15 minutes to complete and will be open until Jan.…

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Will a new law really make Illinois’ FOIA stronger? Journalists there aren’t so sure

By Jackie Spinner, CJR Editor’s Note: This article first ran on August 16, 2016 on the Columbia Journalism Review’s website. This summer, the Illinois Legislature stiffened the penalties that can be imposed on public bodies that refuse to comply with the state’s Freedom of Information Act. HB 4715, part of a two-bill package known as “Molly’s…

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IRE Radio Podcast | BONUS: Tips from a FOIA Terrorist

You’ve probably heard of Jason Leopold, even if his name doesn’t immediately ring a bell. He’s the journalist who forced the release of Hillary Clinton’s emails. He’s also unearthed shocking details on CIA torture and spying. Jason works at VICE News, and he’s the master of the federal FOIA request. In fact, he’s such a…

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IRE Preview: How to fight (and win) open records battles

Get the tools and inspiration you need to successfully fight for records at the IRE Conference in June. Jason Leopold, a self-described FOIA terrorist and a winner of this year’s IRE FOI Medal, will share his strategies and advice on how to wrangle information from recalcitrant officials. He’ll be joined by Brandon Smith, the journalist…

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Judge: Missouri broke the law by concealing execution drug supplier

By Allison Wrabel Cole County Circuit Court Judge Jon Beetem ruled that the Missouri Department of Corrections violated the Sunshine Law when it failed to reveal the name of the pharmacy that supplies the drugs for lethal injections. Under state law, the identities of individual execution team members are to be kept confidential. In 2013,…

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#FOIAFriday: International FOIA tips and resources

Requesting data or documents from another country can be a confusing and challenging task. What kinds of records are available? Who do you contact about them? Which laws govern their release? For #FOIAFriday this week we put together a roundup of some of our favorite resources on international records requests. If you have foreign FOIA…

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