Enhanced Dynamic Geo-Social Environment (EDGE)

Russel Neiss filed this request with the U.S. Army Research Laboratory of the United States of America.

It is a clone of this request.

Tracking #

FA-18-0010

Est. Completion None
Status
Awaiting Appeal

Communications

From: Russel Neiss

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

The source code and all digital assets (3-D environments for each scenario, including accurate avatars, equipment and simulations of individuals and crowds) created for Enhanced Dynamic Geo-Social Environment (EDGE) virtual environments.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Russel Neiss

From: U.S. Army Research Laboratory

The attached is acknowledgement to the subject FOIA request. Thank you.

Edith Koleoso
Paralegal Specialist
Office of Chief Counsel
ATTN: RDRL-LOC
Army Research Laboratory
2800 Powder Mill Road
Adelphi, MD 20783 - 1138
(301)394-1636
(301)394-3972 fax
edith.a.brownkoleoso.civ@mail.mil

From: U.S. Army Research Laboratory

Hello,

Attached is the formal response to your FOIA request.

Respectfully,

Edith Koleoso
Paralegal Specialist
Office of Chief Counsel
ATTN: RDRL-LOC
Army Research Laboratory
2800 Powder Mill Road
Adelphi, MD 20783 - 1138
(301)394-1636

From: Russel Neiss

To Whom It May Concern:

Please consider this a renewal of my request for the information that has not been released and requested above.

Again, I am seeking: The source code and all digital assets (3-D environments for each scenario, including accurate avatars, equipment and simulations of individuals and crowds) created for Enhanced Dynamic Geo-Social Environment (EDGE) virtual environments.

As you are no doubt aware, Section 6(a) of the Freedom of Information Act requires your agency to make a determination of whether to comply or reject a request under the statute within 20 business days. Your February 22, 2018 claiming b(4) exemptions while not formally denying the request does not fulfill either the letter or the spirit of the law.

Please process this request appropriately (and forward it onto initial denial authority) and release the relevant records as per your obligations under the Freedom of Information Act.

Respectfully,
Russel Neiss

From: U.S. Army Research Laboratory

Hello,

As you requested, your FOIA records request has been submitted to the Initial Denial Authority for review.

Thank you,

Edith Koleoso
Paralegal Specialist
Office of Chief Counsel
ATTN: RDRL-LOC
Army Research Laboratory
2800 Powder Mill Road
Adelphi, MD 20783 - 1138
(301)394-1636

From: U.S. Army Research Laboratory

Attached is the Initial Denial Authority's reply to the appeal for documents associated to your FOIA request (FA-18-0010). Thank you

Respectfully,

Edith Koleoso
Paralegal Specialist
Office of Chief Counsel
ATTN: RDRL-LOC
Army Research Laboratory
2800 Powder Mill Road
Adelphi, MD 20783 - 1138
(301)394-1636

From: Russel Neiss

RE: Request number FA-18-0010

This is an appeal pursuant to subsection (a)(6) of the Freedom of Information Act as amended (5 U.S.C. 552). On March 6, 2018 I received a letter from Rebecca Clark of the US Army Research Laboratory denying my request in full for "the source code and all digital assets created for Enhanced Dynamic Geo-Social Environment (EDGE) virtual environments," under Exemption b(4) of the FOIA.

You will note that your agency has withheld the documents that I requested in their entirety. Since the FOIA provides that "any reasonably segregable portion of a record shall be provided to any person requesting such record after deletion of the portions which are exempt," I believe that your agency has not complied with the FOIA. I believe that there must be segregable portions which do not fall within the FOIA exemptions and which must be released.

Your agency claims that the records requested are "trade secrets" and their release would thus "cause substantial competitive harm to the prime developer Cole Engineering Services Incorporated, in their future government and commercial procurements." Federal courts have held that the term "trade secrets" is narrowly defined in Public Citizen Health Research Group v. Food & Drug Administration. 704 F.2d 1280, 1288 (D.C. Cir. 1983). A “trade secret,” for FOIA purposes, is any “secret, commercially valuable plan, formula, process, or device that is used for the making, preparing, compounding, or processing of trade commodities and that can be said to be the end product of either innovation or substantial effort.”

Source code is not a "plan, formula, process, or device" and therefore cannot be deemed to be a trade secret under FOIA. Likewise digital assets such as 3-D environments and models are not a "plan, formula, process, or device" and therefore cannot be deemed to be a trade secret under FOIA. Further, with respect to the digital assets such as 3-D environments and models, these records are not secret as Cole Engineering Services has made them available to the public via their website: http://coleengineering.com/capabilities/gaming#prettyPhoto[gallery]/0/ and for sale on TurboSquid https://www.turbosquid.com/Search/Artists/Cole-Games

I trust that upon examination of my request, you will conclude that the records I have requested are not properly covered by exemption b(4) of the amended FOIA, and that you will overrule the decision to withhold the information.

If you choose to continue to withhold some or all of the material which was denied in my initial request to your agency, I ask that you give me an index of such material, together with the justification for the denial of each item which is still withheld. As provided in the Freedom of Information Act, I will expect to receive a reply to this adminstrative appeal letter within twenty (20) working days.

Files

pages

Close