NTSB and NGA edited my request content and cancelled another. Is this allowed?
Hello, Other than MuckRock I am doing requests on my own related to this project: http://muckrock.com/project/find-the-truth-about-flight-mh370-44/
I sent 3 FOIA requests to NTSB. Of them one was not even processed just “Closed”. The other 2 were merged. I sent a request to NGA (National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency) also using email. They replied to me saying I had to use a form. I sent the form and when they I received the acknowledgement I noticed the resulting request subject was a mix of the previous two (email, form). It became unreadable.
What I should put in the appeal? Should I send a complaint instead?
Did you do a Privacy Act request to the NGIA? That’s the only reason I can think of where they’d direct you to a form. Anyway, you can appeal anytime for any reason. You don’t have to explain why you are appealing, you can just make an appeal.
I just sent a FOIA not Privacy Act. It’s also happened with FBI, they replied with a form that asked also other personal data such address.
This was the form I received by NGA after I sent my request. http://docdro.id/npL8mXi
Anyone? Is the editing and merging of requests allowed?
Google is your friend. NGA’s FOIA information page can be found here: https://www.nga.mil/About/Pages/FOIA.aspx
From that page:
“To obtain records from the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, a FOIA request may be submitted in writing (reasonably describing the records requested) using the following means:
The Public Access Link (PAL): is under contruction. \
Email to FOIANGA@nga.mil
Using our request forms located under the “Key Documents” tab.
Hardcopy requests may be sent to the NGA FOIA Program Office via:
Mail: National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency FOIA/PA Requester Service Center\ 7500 GEOINT Drive, MS N22-SISM\ Springfield, Virginia 22150-7500
To obtain the status of a request or ask questions about the FOIA process, you may utilize your PAL account, call the FOIA/PA Requester Service Center at 571-557-4141, email your inquiry to FOIANGA@nga.mil, or fax your status inquiry to 571-558-3117.”
A cached copy of that page reveals that its language has not substantially changed since at least 9/5/15. (Read: Email FOIA requests are fine, even according to NGA policy.)
However… If you are requesting records from a less-than-cooperative agency I highly recommend certified mail. It’s far too easy to “not receive” an email. (And if someone doesn’t receive your email they can’t/won’t alert you to that fact.)