The public body responsible for enforcing compliance with the Freedom of Information Act is currently subject to a complaint from its own staff — for, errrr, failing to comply with the Freedom of Information Act. With a pay dispute raging at the Information Commissioner’s Office, the regulator has not only ignored an FOI request on an 11% raise for three senior […]

As regular readers will recall, Iain Duncan Smith and the DWP have been throwing money at increasingly desperate legal bids to keep a number of documents related to the Universal Credit programme under wraps — and they’ve just lost. Again. With IDS’ critics claiming that he may have misled parliament on the progress (or utter lack […]

Having acted on information sent to our tip-offs box, our Twitter followers may recall Scrapbook’s frustration at South Tyneside Council’s approach to accountability last week. While other local authorities have published their councillors’ statutory register of interests online for years, South Tyneside appear to be stuck in some form of transparency timewarp redolent of T. Dan Smith-era […]

The government aren’t happy to hear that the number of Freedom of Information requests is increasing year on year; so much so that they’re planning to introduce a range of tariffs to restrict Freedom of Information requests. But at least there’s someone to blame: Eric Pickles. The government’s “transparency agenda” is leading to the rise in […]

The Conservatives are planning to restrict Freedom of Information requests. Despite an existing framework for charging costlier requests, a report by Newsnight reveals the Conservatives are considering introducing a “range of tarrifs” for access to documents by journalists, campaigners and members of the public. After Michael Gove was caught using a secret email account with the […]

In a move preparing the ground for an assault on the public’s information rights, a survey conducted by the Ministry of Justice has revealed significant opposition to Freedom of Information legislation from Whitehall civil servants. Apparently Sir Humphrey doesn’t thinks plebians should pay money to access information “like expenses, crime statistics and so on”. Could transparency be going the […]

Prince Charles has lost a three-year legal battle against an environmental activist, with judges ruling the Duchy of Cornwall is a “public authority” which must answer requests under freedom of information legislation. The case could open the floodgates for scrutiny of the Prince’s £700m property empire. With an absolute exemption from the Freedom of Information […]

Results of an internal investigation by the Information Commissioner’s Office have revealed that several government departments are failing on their legal transparency obligations, with one freedom of information request to the Home Office delayed by 1,241 days – more than three years. The investigation, details of which have been obtained by Scrapbook, was triggered as a result […]

It was with some amusement in July that Scrapbook reported a pronouncement from the Information Commissioner that Freedom of Information requests can be submitted by Twitter. The edict means that every public authority using the service is now obligated to monitor their accounts for statutory requests under the 2000 Act. Not seeming the most pragmatic interpretation of the […]

Has the Information Commissioner Christopher Graham been spending too much time with Steve Hilton? In an utterly foolhardy move, the regulator of Freedom of Information legislation has decided that requests for data held by public bodies can be sent via Twitter. Under the Commissioner’s interpretation of the 2000 Act, Downing Street are, bizarrely enough, obligated […]