Friday, August 10, 2012

APME Nashville session tackles government secrecy

Despite claims of more transparency, government secrecy has increased and the fight for public information has become harder and harder.

A panel at APME Nashville 2012 will discuss how the FOIA process has been slowed or outright corrupted, and other recent roadblocks the government has erected that threaten the free flow of information and the public's right to know.
This candid conversation will touch on:
• How reporters need to marry hard data analysis with shoeleather reporting in uncovering election finance details of major donors and contributions – ultimately, the special interests funding our elected representatives’ campaigns.
• How government agencies appear to be throwing up regular roadblocks to clean, reliable and free data.
• Recent FOIA fights including F.B.I. records the Commercial Appeal sought in the case of civil rights photographer Ernest Wither.

The session will be led by Bob Meyers, president of the National Press Association.

Panelists include: Jack Gillum, investigative reporter for the Associated Press; Christine Walz, attorney with Holland & Knight, who handles numerous First Amendment and FOIA cases; and Gene Policinski, senior vice president and executive director of the First Amendment Center.

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