News Media for Open Government

News Media for Open Government News Media for Open Government (formerly the Sunshine in Government Initiative) is a coalition of media groups promoting open government. The Sunshine in Government Initiative (SGI) is a coalition of media groups promoting policies that help ensure the government is accessible, accountable and open.

Operating as usual

05/11/2017
First Amendment Report Card | Newseum Institute

“Repeated public criticism of the media at the highest levels of government and the prevalence of false information in the public sphere makes it harder for the public to determine which information is true or false, and which sources are credible. Lack of public statements of support from government officials for the essential function and role of the news media also brings down the grade. Our democratic system depends on public support for independent journalism. Press freedom is undermined when the public has a harder time knowing which information and which sources are credible and reliable.”

– Richard Blum, Director, News Media for Open Government

Rarely in our lifetimes has there been more controversy about the state of our First Amendment freedoms. It is critically important for our nation to have serious discussions about the threats and opportunities we face in maintaining and trying to enhance our democracy.

News Media for Open Government
05/11/2017

News Media for Open Government

News Media for Open Government's cover photo
05/11/2017

News Media for Open Government's cover photo

Incredibly well-done explanation in 2 minutes showing why anonymous sources are vital to truth-telling.
03/28/2017
The Face of Real News

Incredibly well-done explanation in 2 minutes showing why anonymous sources are vital to truth-telling.

Watch John Carreyrou’s recap and analysis showing how real journalists and real news comes from America’s most trusted newspaper.

We are formally announcing that the Sunshine in Government Initiative has a new name and broadened focus to meet the cha...
01/18/2017
Release: SGI adopts new name, broadened focus: News Media for Open Government – News Media for Open Government

We are formally announcing that the Sunshine in Government Initiative has a new name and broadened focus to meet the challenges facing newsgatherers and to promote open government. We are News Media for Open Government. The announcement is here: http://foropengov.org/wordpress/blog-post/release-sgi-adopts-new-name-broadened-focus-news-media-for-open-government/

Release: SGI adopts new name, broadened focus: News Media for Open Government NMOG-admin January 18, 2017 PRESS RELEASE — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Sunshine in Government Initiative changes name to News Media for Open Government, Re-focuses on defending and advancing newsgathering and open government...

News Media for Open Government
01/17/2017

News Media for Open Government

News Media for Open Government's cover photo
12/08/2016

News Media for Open Government's cover photo

POWER-POWERED STORY (IMPACT): Senators ask for DEA data in wake of Washington Post investigation
10/27/2016
POWER-POWERED STORY (IMPACT): Senators ask for DEA data in wake of Washington Post investigation

POWER-POWERED STORY (IMPACT): Senators ask for DEA data in wake of Washington Post investigation

Without FOIA, reporters would not have an administrative law judge’s concerns on the record, which in part helped spur the Senators to act. The Post’s work had an impact. Acting DEA Administrator Chuck Rosenberg sent this memo to all employees:

“Recent articles in The Washington Post criticized our...

10/14/2016
Tax Analysts Conference on Transparency and FOIA

Kevin M Goldberg and I joined Tax Analyst's Cara Griffith and Chris Bergin talking about the frustrations with trying to get information from the IRS and whether the changes Congress made to FOIA could help.

In the 50th year since its founding, is the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) making a difference in transparency? What more do we need to do to strive for o...

09/27/2016
Tax Analysts Conference on Transparency

Looking forward to participating in this discussion.

http://www.taxanalysts.org/transparency

In the 50th year since its founding, is the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) making a difference in transparency? What more do we need to do to strive for openness in the government? Join us as we have a thought provoking and engaging discussion on the FOIA and transparency on October 13, 2016 at t...

07/14/2016
United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary

Happy to have the opportunity to testify earlier this week as the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee celebrated FOIA's 50th anniversary with a bipartisan discussion on how to make FOIA work better over the next 50 years.

United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary

News Media for Open Government
07/13/2016

News Media for Open Government

Very proud to celebrate President Obama's signature a few moments ago on the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016!  http://bit.l...
06/30/2016
PRESS RELEASE: Media coalition celebrates President Obama signing of FOIA reforms into law as...

Very proud to celebrate President Obama's signature a few moments ago on the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016! http://bit.ly/298W90G

#FixFOIAby50, Congress, FOIA, reforming FOIA, White House PRESS RELEASE: Media coalition celebrates President Obama signing of FOIA reforms into law as FOIA turns 50 on July 4 June 30, 2016 PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 30, 2016 [Link to PDF version] Media coalition celebrates President...

Commodity boards need more transparency in how USDA marketing programs are run after the Egg Board was caught influencin...
05/03/2016
Congress seeking exemptions from public scrutiny of groups running food promotional campaigns

Commodity boards need more transparency in how USDA marketing programs are run after the Egg Board was caught influencing policy. Instead, a secrecy provision is snuck into the agriculture spending bill. We hope Congress will put an end to these secrecy power plays. http://www.usnews.com/news/politics/articles/2016-05-03/inside-washington-ag-groups-seek-exemption-from-scrutiny

NEW YORK (AP) — Congress is pushing the Agriculture Department to exempt the groups behind promotional campaigns like "The Incredible, Edible Egg" and "Pork, the Other White Meat" from public scrutiny of their internal operations despite recent controversy.

News Media for Open Government's cover photo
04/08/2016

News Media for Open Government's cover photo

News Media for Open Government
04/08/2016

News Media for Open Government

Reporters used FOIA to obtain the inspector general reporting concluding managers falsified wait-time statistics in seve...
04/08/2016
VA bosses in 7 states manipulated vets' wait times for care

Reporters used FOIA to obtain the inspector general reporting concluding managers falsified wait-time statistics in several states.

Supervisors instructed schedulers to falsify patient wait times at Veterans Affairs' medical facilities in at least seven states, according to newly released investigation reports from the department’s inspector general.

When you use FOIA to GET a story, please mention FOIA IN the story. We're grateful some of you do so we could point out ...
03/17/2016
Without FOIA

When you use FOIA to GET a story, please mention FOIA IN the story. We're grateful some of you do so we could point out the public would be in the dark without FOIA.
https://withoutfoia.tumblr.com/

Ron Fournier asks whether earlier public disclosure of water test results would have forced governments to act first to ...
02/19/2016
Could Open Government Have Helped Flint Avert Its Crisis?

Ron Fournier asks whether earlier public disclosure of water test results would have forced governments to act first to protect residents while sorting through Flint's water problems.

Technology can’t make government perfect. But making government more transparent and accessible might make its failures less profound.

01/20/2016

We've added the Billings Gazette and South Bend Tribune to the list of media outlets calling for Congress to #FixFOIAby50. (FOIA turns 50 on July 4, 2016.)

News Media for Open Government
01/15/2016

News Media for Open Government

12/15/2015
Last-minute change to cybersecurity bill may extend secrecy to government analyses | The...

We're hoping congressional leaders will oppose this last-minute proposal to put beyond the public's eye any reports, assessments, or other analyses produced by state and local governments. The public has a clear right to be informed of government assessments that do not create harm from their release. bit.ly/1RmM9jE

b3 exemptions, Congress Last-minute change to cybersecurity bill may extend secrecy to government analyses December 15, 2015 State and local governments would not be able to disclose to the public analysis and concerns related to cybersecurity under a proposed agreement on cybersecurity legislation…

10/05/2015

Anyone who's used FOIA recently knows how frustrating it can be. Media associations are telling Congress we deserve a stronger, better FOIA before FOIA turns 50 next year. Please spread the word! #FixFOIAby50

Last week we wrote that despite drawbacks, "Release for One, Release for All" is good for an informed public.http://suns...
07/21/2015
Release for One, Release for All | The Sunshine in Government Initiative

Last week we wrote that despite drawbacks, "Release for One, Release for All" is good for an informed public.

http://sunshineingovernment.org/wordpress/2015/07/13/release-for-one-release-for-all/

Federal agency activity, FOIA Release for One, Release for All by Rick Blum • July 13, 2015 • 0 Comments An experiment in responding to FOIA requests by also posting responsive documents online should do more good than harm for transparency and accountability in government by, if implemented well, i…

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