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Throwback Thursday: Thinking about Exemption 4

We get many requests for assistance related to FOIA Exemption 4, which protects from disclosure commercial and financial information provided to the government. For example, over the last few months we have heard from requesters frustrated about delays related to submitter notice and an agency interested in brainstorming how best to communicate with the entities […]

The Department of State launches a new FOIA site

The Department of State received nearly 19,000 FOIA requests in fiscal year 2012 – clearly, people are interested in the agency’s records! To better satisfy the needs of the public, the department has launched a new FOIA website (available at www.foia.state.gov). State designed the website with researchers in mind. It makes already-public information easier to […]

Reboot your e-records knowledge July 24

It would seem that the use of electronic records would simplify the FOIA process; if agencies don’t have to reproduce and redact paper, that’s got to be easier, right? In reality, electronic records raise lots of questions for FOIA programs. For instance: If a requester asks for electronic copies of paper records — requiring the […]

Death breathes new life into some records

We’ve written before about the careful balancing act that Federal agencies must perform when they consider requests for records that contain information about an individual other than the requester—those who work for the government and those who don’t. In most cases, such third-party information will be withheld under Exemption 6 (and possibly Exemption 7(C) if […]

FOIA Solutions: Little things mean a lot

The Department of Justice’s Office of Information Policy (OIP) hosted a Freedom of Information Act Administrative Forum on June 5, 2013, giving FOIA professionals – particularly FOIA Public Liaisons – a chance to discuss the issues they face. As with many discussions in this budget climate, the conversation inevitably turned to how to do more […]