FOIA begins at 40?

In 1966, then President Lyndon Johnson signed the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to spell out how government agencies should provide information to citizens upon request. The act was updated in 1974. recently reminded us all that the FOIA — pronounced foy-uh — is for everyone, not just people who work for news organizations. Said DefenseTech:

“The Electronic Frontier Foundation, which hired two of the best FOIA filers in the country this summer, just updated its legal guide for bloggers with a FOIA primer.”

Wikipedia will tell you more about FOIA or you can read the text of the law.

To satisfy my curiosity I looked up a bit about Defense Tech and read an interview with its founder, freelance journalist Noah Shachtman, who tells of starting this blog.

“After Sept. 11, 2001, I got more interested in the defense beat and was writing more stories on that topic. And I just noticed there was a real dearth of information out there for regular people that weren’t in the military industrial complex. You know, the Pentagon budget is $400 billion, but people know more about the inner workings of Hollywood than they do how their tax money is being spent on defense projects.”

Time shifting trend: Leichtman Research Group “estimates that less than 4% of all TV viewing in the US today is of recorded DVR programs or on-Demand viewing — up from about 2 percent a year ago.” That according to a Center for Media Research summary that included this observation about the 12 percent of U.S. households that have DVRs:

“The mean reported number of programs recorded each week in DVR households increased by 23% in the past year, to 11.3 programs recorded per week.”

What’s the Hubbub? Giovanni Rodriguez, an associate of the Society for New Communications Research, launched Hubbub PR on Halloween. In addition to acquiring and serving clients, Hubbub aims to build an online community of PR folks, “open and visible to the entire public,” as he said in an email. “That will enable members to do their own business on the site — share job leads, market information, resource information, etc.” I don’t ever recall having met Rodriguez but the community sounds like a good idea and as an advisory member of the SNCR, I wish Hubbub good luck.