Tag Archives: Freedom of information legislation

Vexatious requests guidance: weakening our power to make the state speak

The long awaited guidance on vexatious requests has arrived.  The guidance follows from two distinct events. The first was the Parliament’s review of FOIA during which the MoJ presented evidence that suggested council’s were limited in their ability to deal … Continue reading

Posted in FOIA, public sector, transparency, Uncategorized, vexatious requests | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Empty Archives: hollow men and the fear of accountability?

In their recent visit to the Justice Select Committee Lord O’Donnell and Lord Hennessy talked about the possibility of “empty archives”.  Lord Hennessy mentioned that Cabinet minutes were not as explicit as they were in previous generation. He said that … Continue reading

Posted in FOIA, Government, statesmanship, transparency | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

In defence of frivolous requests: FOIA and political accountability.

The FOIA is under post legislative scrutiny by the justice select committee.  The written and oral evidence provided showed a concerned for frivolous or time wasting requests.  I write here to defend one of these requests and show that they … Continue reading

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Can social media reduce the cost of responding to foi requests?

In the recent written evidence to the Justice select committee reviewing FOIA in the UK, the “cost” of FOI has been discussed.  Often, the witnesses want to cut this cost by limiting the number of requests. I would argue that … Continue reading

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Freedom of Information’s dirty little secret: it works.

What a casual observer of the debate over FOIA’s future will miss is that it works in practice and theory.  At a basic level, this is an obvious point. The legislation is supposed to work as designed by Parliament.  After … Continue reading

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The day Freedom of Information died in the United Kingdom

The 29th of March passed without much notice for most people in the United Kingdom. For freedom of information, it was a watershed day. From this day forward, Freedom of Information will never be the same.  Why?  The First Tier … Continue reading

Posted in FOIA, Government, transparency | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

If a FOIA request costs £293, how much does it cost to answer a letter?

Over the past couple of years, I have seen an increase references to the cost of FOI requests. When the cost is calculated, it is usually use a number methods (Opportunity Costs, Activity Based Costing (ABC)), or just asking the … Continue reading

Posted in activity based costing, FOIA, Government, local government, opportunity cost, transparency | Tagged , , | 4 Comments