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Looking for a better way to teach public records? Read what we’ve learned in Make FOIA Work

Looking for a better way to teach public records? Read what we’ve learned in Make FOIA Work

Last August, with support from the Online News Association, we partnered with the Engagement Lab at Emerson College and the Boston Institute for Nonprofit Journalism to explore new ways of teaching public records to students and the broader community. A new website and downloadable guide details what we’ve learned

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FOIA FAQ: Making the most of MuckRock’s document viewer

FOIA FAQ: Making the most of MuckRock’s document viewer

Longtime MuckRock readers might have noticed that there are two ways to link to responsive records on the site: A direct link to the .pdf on our server, or a link to the DocumentCloud document viewer on the request page. Wherever possible, we try to link to the latter, as it has a few advantages over your standard browser viewer that we’d like to highlight today.

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FOIA FAQ: How to explore MuckRock’s public archive of FOIA requests and releases

FOIA FAQ: How to explore MuckRock’s public archive of FOIA requests and releases

Over the last nine years, MuckRock users have filed over 60,000 public records requests at the local, state, and federal levels, resulting in the release of four million pages of government records. Today, we’re going to look at how you can use the Requests page to explore the archives, and even build off the great FOIA work of others.

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A guide to the FOIA exemptions in the newly-released version of the Mueller Report

A guide to the FOIA exemptions in the newly-released version of the Mueller Report

Yesterday, in response to FOIA lawsuits by BuzzFeed News and the Electronic Privacy and Information Center, the Justice Department released a new version of the Mueller Report, replacing the much-mocked ersatz exemption categories with actual FOIA exemptions. Here’s what those exemptions are, and what they mean.

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Five lessons from "FOIA Strategies and Tactics"

Five lessons from “FOIA Strategies and Tactics”

Last weekend, an anonymously-attributed presentation entitled “FOIA Strategies and Tactics” started making the rounds in the #OpenGov community, offering something for beginners, veterans, and fans of vintage Tex Avery alike. While the whole thing’s worth a read, today we wanted to focus on the five points brought up in the presentation’s conclusion, as they address some often-overlooked elements of the whole FOIA process.

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