communications about whatdotheyknow.com

Ganesh Sittampalam made this Freedom of Information request to Rother District Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Ganesh Sittampalam

Dear Sir or Madam,

I request, under the Freedom of Information act, a copy of any internal or external communications (emails, memos etc) sent either from or to either David Edwards or Lynda Crawford that mention the website "whatdoyoutheyknow.com". This excludes emails that are already available at the pages linked from http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/body/rothe...

In the case of any material sent in answer to this question in which you claim copyright protection, I also request consent to re-use it by publishing it on the web.

Yours faithfully,

Ganesh Sittampalam

David Edwards, Rother District Council

I am now out of the office - I hope to be back Monday 21 July.

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Lynda Crawford, Rother District Council

Dear Mr Sittampalam

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000

I refer to your request received on 14 July 2008 about communications
regarding the 'whatdotheyknow' website.

Under section 8 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, a request for
information must comply with three requirements. It must:

(a) be in writing,
(b) state the name of the applicant and an address for correspondence, and
(c) describes the information requested.
After initial consideration, this request appears to comply with
requirements (a) and (c) but it does not comply with requirement (b)
because you do not provide an address for correspondence. We are entitled
to this even if the request is made by e-mail and you ask us for a reply
by e-mail, and we are able to comply.

Under section 14 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 we are not obliged
to comply with a request for information if the request is vexatious, and
where we have previously complied with a request for information which was
made by any person, we are not obliged to comply with a subsequent
identical or substantially similar request from that person unless a
reasonable interval has elapsed between compliance with the previous
request and the making of the current request. The Information
Commissioner has advised that a request may be regarded as vexatious if
it:

o clearly does not have any serious purpose or value;
o is designed to cause disruption or annoyance;
o has the effect of harassing the public authority; or
o can otherwise fairly be characterised as obsessive or manifestly
unreasonable.
Unless we knew your real name and real address it would be more difficult
for us to determine whether your request was vexatious or repeated. For
instance, unless you are a professional journalist or researcher, your
request would be less likely to have any serious purpose or value if you
do not live in this District.

At the bottom of your e-mail you say that any reply will be published on
the Internet. With reference to that, would you please note that the Act
does not require us to consent to such publication and therefore, when you
have supplied your address for correspondence, any response would be
personal to yourself and no consent to publish it, for instance on a web
site, is given. Any application for consent to re-use information will be
considered under the Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations 2005,
but if consent is given a charge may be made to you. Please feel free,
however, to display this response on your website.

Since the coming into force of the Act we have processed over 400 separate
direct requests from people who wrote letters, sent e-mails (with their
name and address) to [Rother District Council request email] <[1]mailto:[Rother District Council request email]> or
used our website. In the majority of these cases we have been able to
supply the information requested within the statutory time limit. We take
seriously our obligation to provide advice and assistance to people who
make genuine requests for information. If your request is not vexatious or
repeated, then I would invite you to make your request to us direct,
complying with section 8 of the Act. I assure you that having regard to
the Data Protection Act 1998 we do not divulge the names or addresses of
people who make requests for information.

You may use our internal complaints procedure if you are dissatisfied. If
you are still dissatisfied you may appeal to the Information
Commissioner. Please contact Anne Bruin, Customer Services Manager, if
you wish to complain.

David Edwards
Interim Solicitor
01424 787840
www.rother.gov.uk

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1. mailto:[Rother District Council request email]

Ganesh Sittampalam

Dear Lynda Crawford,

Thank you for your reply.

I have supplied my real name and a valid email address for correspondence, which is all that a valid request requires. If you believe that my request is vexatious or repeated, then please issue a proper refusal notice to that effect giving precise details of why you think so. Otherwise please respond to my original request within the required timeframe.

I have already made an application for consent to re-use this information, please see the second paragraph of my original request.

If, once you have considered my request and associated application under the re-use regulations, you have information to release, but you have a valid reason for not sending it to this email address, then please let me know and I will supply a different email address or postal address as necessary.

Yours sincerely,

Ganesh Sittampalam

Lynda Crawford, Rother District Council

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    Data Protection Principles Members Dec 2005.ppt

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Dear Mr Sittampalam

FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT 2000

With reference to your request received on 14 July 2008 about
communications regarding the 'whatdotheyknow' website, please see the
attached.

You may use our internal complaints procedure if you are dissatisfied. If
you are still dissatisfied you may appeal to the Information
Commissioner. Please contact Anne Bruin, Team Leader - Customer Services,
if you wish to complain.

David Edwards
Interim Solicitor
[1]www.rother.gov.uk

References

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1. http://www.rother.gov.uk/