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FOIA News: NASA blocks FOIA request for potential White House ‘media blackout’ orders

FOIA News (2017)Kevin SchmidtComment

NASA blocks FOIA request for potential White House ‘media blackout’ orders

By Dell Cameron, Daily Dot, Mar. 21, 2017

Users of a popular online service that helps the public acquire legal access to government records face new hurdles when petitioning NASA under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

The National Aeronautics Space Administration has begun rejecting public records requests from users of FOIA request-filing service MuckRock, who don’t provide what the agency calls a “personal mailing address,” even though the requirement appears to have no basis under the law.

MuckRock, founded in 2010, has helped its members (including the Daily Dot) file more than 28,000 FOIA requests at federal, state, and local agencies. Its staff also frequently publishes articles based on government records they uncover through FOIA. On Tuesday, for example, MuckRock released a batch emails from the Office of Government Ethics, revealing the agency’s frustrations after failed attempts to communicate with the Trump transition team in an effort to stem potential conflicts of interest.

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