Wednesday night, WhatDoTheyKnow.com made its 100,000th request under the United Kingdom’s Freedom of Information Act. The site, a product of MySociety.org and one of its democracy and transparency websites for the citizens of the UK, has been sending out requests on behalf of its users to various government agencies since February, 2008.
Read the rest of “Annoying” British Officials Since 2008 at TechPresident. This is a fun sort of hack, in the absence of a government web site that does this for its users.
I’ve never understood why governments don’t do this on their own: put every request online and let users search it themselves. Say goodbye to ever having to hunt down the same document twice, for starters. Or redacting it twice. You’d probably get fewer FOIA requests overall if you made it easy to search past FOIA requests.
Apparently, our federal government is doing just that. A US Government-wide, intra-agenc FOIA site is planned to go live in October. The EPA is building it for some reason, but I’m glad it’s getting built period. Nerdcelsior!