FOI NOTES: Videos, Videos, Aid Transparency, More

15 December 2011

India: To create awareness on the Right to Information Act, It’s Time To Make a Difference (ITMD) released a short film Melukolupu. ITMD plans to screen the film in rural areas to create awareness on RTI among the lesser privileged sections.

United Kingdom: BBC FOI expert Martin Rosenbaum in a video providing tips on writing FOI requests, including being specific about dates and knowing which organisation holds the information you’re looking for.

Aid Transparency: The Publish What You Fund analysis of transparency in the final Busan Outcome Document.  “It draws out and analyses the relevant parts of the text, and highlights where clear interpretation is going to be needed to ensure there is no misuse around the exemption of commercial flows.”

World Bank: Seven papers on technology for accountability.

Gender Equality:  Vivien Savath of the Landesa Center for Women’s Land Rights, writes an article beginning:  “National governments across the world continue the slow march toward legislating gender equality, but in countries with gendered patterns of access to information, women are one of the first groups to lose out on their legal rights.” 

United Kingdom: The Constitution Unit at University College London has just published a study indicating that the FOI Act has made local councils more open and transparent. “Each year more and more questions have been asked with request numbers rising from around 60,000 a year in 2005 to nearly 200,000 in 2010.”


Fellowship: The Google Policy Fellowship program offers undergraduate, graduate, and law students interested in Internet and technology policy the opportunity to spend the summer contributing to the public dialogue on these issues, and exploring future academic and professional interests. Fellows will have the opportunity to work at public interest organizations at the forefront of debates on broadband and access policy, content regulation, copyright and trademark reform, consumer privacy, open government, and more.


Archives: The General Conference of UNESCO has adopted the Universal Declaration on Archives proposed by the International Council on Archives.

FOI and Software: Comment by Forbes columnist Ben Kerschberg on a November New York State Supreme Court decision that said software is covered by the state FOI law.

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