WatchDog TipSheet

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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Sunshine Events, Standing Rock, FERC and Pruitt

It's Sunshine Week, and open government events are scheduled around the United States. This month's WatchDog TipSheet has a rundown, plus news on SEJ concerns over restrictions to press access at FERC meetings, on a 7,564-page FOIA email dump on EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt and more. 

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WatchDog Group Sues for Records as Pruitt Confirmation Vote Nears & More

The latest WatchDog TipSheet details an open-records case against U.S. EPA nominee Scott Pruitt (shown), the scoop on an Agriculture Department animal welfare database that vanished then returned, a reporter busted at Standing Rock, plus items on whistleblowers, coal-ash and more.

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As EPA, Other Agencies Muzzle Staff, WatchDog Issues Leaker's Guide

At a time when government information may be harder than ever to access, WatchDog offers a unique guide to leaks that reporters can offer potential whistleblowers. Also in the latest column, sealed records on a weedkiller-cancer connection, secret talks on coal-ash regs and more. 

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