WatchDog TipSheet

FOIA Suit, Silence on Hog Farms & Sea-Level Rise, Plus Shield Laws

A push for disclosure on hazardous air emissions from industrial hog farms, and reporting on how the coastal real estate industry works to block bad news about sea-level rise. That, plus the Bay Journal FOIAs the EPA over grant defunding, and a move in Congress towards a federal shield law, all in the latest WatchDog.

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SEJ Objects Over EPA Response to AP Story; plus, Suits & Rulings Involving Interior, EPA, NOAA

The SEJ has written the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to object to its criticism of an Associated Press story about Superfund sites following Hurricane Harvey floods. That, plus a judge rules against EPA for withholding records on the pesticide Enlist Duo, and more, in this month's WatchDog.

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EPA Press Office Attacks Journalists à la Trump

The Trump Administration's EPA Press Office appears to have launched a personal attack on journalists for unfavorable coverage. WatchDog reports what happened when the Associated Press looked into possible pollution at Houston Superfund sites flooded by Hurricane Harvey.

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Court Strikes Down “Ag-Gag” Law; plus a Journalist’s Legal Guide; State Shield for Climate Research and More

A federal court has ruled unconstitutional a Utah law that made undercover filming of livestock operations illegal. What's it mean for similar laws elsewhere? The latest WatchDog has the story, plus news on protecting whistleblowers, a digital journalist's legal guide, shielding of climate info and leaked government reports.

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Opening Pruitt’s Calendar and Saving EPA Climate Info; plus, DAPL FOIA Denied and Hoopla over Senate Hallway Interviews

Unlike his predecessors, new EPA head Scott Pruitt isn't publishing his calendar. Pushback from enviros, plus, EPA's scrubbed climate info starts reappearing on city websites around the country. That and news on a Dakota Access Pipeline FOIA and on reporters fighting for Capitol Hill access in this month's WatchDog.

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Feds Scrub Climate Info; plus Libel Suit, Spill Catcher, Surveillance & Water Data

As some warned, federal environmental agencies have begun to purge web info on topics like climate change. WatchDog TipSheet has that story, plus items about an unusual libel lawsuit, a news outfit using satellite for groundtruthing, a new source of online water data, how journalists can protect against surveillance and more.

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Working with Leaks and Whistleblowers, Part Two

In the second of a two-part WatchDog TipSheet on the relationship between journalists and whistleblowers, we take a closer look at how to apply basic security measures, the importance of obtaining documents and understanding the legal status of leaked information. And in case you missed it, Part One of the series. 

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Working with Leaks and Whistleblowers, Part One

In the first of a two-part WatchDog TipSheet, we explore the relationship between journalist and anonymous leaker. How to find whistleblowers, build their trust and establish groundrules that work for you. Also, when not to rely on anonymous leaks. Next week: Security, documentation and the law around leaks.

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Leaker’s Guide, Part Two — What’s Legal, What’s Not?

As journalists ramp up the cultivation of potential sources within government, WatchDog provides a guide to leaking and whistleblowing. What actions does the law cover? How are whistleblowers protected? What about reporter-source privilege and shield laws? Plus, is there a U.S. EPA policy on talking to media anyway?

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How To File a FOIA Request

As SEJournal's part during Sunshine Week, we've put together a step-by-step for filing your own Freedom of Information Act requests. Find out about best practices for waiving fees, expediting requests, pushing back on exemptions, appealing FOIA denials and using state open-records laws. [Image: © Clipart.com]

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