SF-311 2017 (National Counterintelligence and Security Center)

Emma Best filed this request with the National Counterintelligence and Security Center of the United States of America.
Due July 18, 2018
Est. Completion None
Awaiting Response


From: Emma Best

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:

Copies of all drafted, submitted or received SF-311 forms (https://www.archives.gov/files/isoo/security-forms/sf311.pdf) produced in the year prior to the receipt of this FOIA request. SF-311 forms may also be identified as Agency Security Classification Management Program Data.

I am a member of the news media and request classification as such. I have previously written about the government and its activities, with some reaching over 100,000 readers. As such, as I have a reasonable expectation of publication and my editorial and writing skills are well established. In addition, I discuss and comment on the files online and make them available through non-profits such as the Internet Archive and MuckRock, disseminating them to a large audience. While my research is not limited to this, a great deal of it, including this, focuses on the activities and attitudes of the government itself. As such, it is not necessary for me to demonstrate the relevance of this particular subject in advance.

Additionally, case law states that “proof of the ability to disseminate the released information to a broad cross- section of the public is not required.” Judicial Watch, Inc. v. Dep’t of Justice, 365 F.3d 1108, 1126 (D.C. Cir. 2004); see Carney v. U.S. Dep’t of Justice, 19 F.3d 807, 814-15 (2d Cir. 1994). Further, courts have held that "qualified because it also had “firm” plans to “publish a number of . . . ‘document sets’” concerning United States foreign and national security policy." Under this criteria, as well, I qualify as a member of the news media.

Additionally, courts have held that the news media status "focuses on the nature of the requester, not its request. The provision requires that the request be “made by” a representative of the news media. Id. § 552(a)(4)(A)(ii)(II). A newspaper reporter, for example, is a representative of the news media regardless of how much interest there is in the story for which he or she is requesting information." As such, the details of the request itself are moot for the purposes of determining the appropriate fee category.

As my primary purpose is to inform about government activities by reporting on it and making the raw data available, I request that fees be waived.

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.


Emma Best

From: National Counterintelligence and Security Center

Good Morning Ms. Best,

Thank you for your request. This request appears to be a duplicate of a request we received June 18, 2018 at 2:24 pm.

Please confirm so we may continue with processing your request.

Thank you.


From: Emma Best

I'm rather confused, the request you're replying to was sent on June 18, 2018. If it was sent twice on that day, that was an error.

From: National Counterintelligence and Security Center

Good Morning,

Yes but you sent two emails on June 18, 2018, with the same title. One at the time of 2:24 pm and the other at the time of 2:25 pm, both which are enclosed.


From: Emma Best

Oh dear, then yes - the second was a mistake. Thanks for reaching out to clarify!

From: National Counterintelligence and Security Center

Good afternoon Ms. Best,

Thank you for your request. Your case number is DF-2018-00220 date 17 June, 2018 as stated below. The request is currently being processed and is on queue.


From: National Counterintelligence and Security Center

Good afternoon,

Thanks for your request. Please see attached documents.

Let us know if you have any questions.