I have seen some people post go-fund-me pages to get $$ for a FOIA request and these things can get pretty expensive. What I am still not sure about
is what happens during a document request. Let's use the example of the Steele Dossier (should it ever become available). Now if one person in each
state wants this and they all submit a request, so they all get their own copy and do they all have to pay for it individually? Or once the document
is requested by anyone, the info is published by the gov on their site:
and anyone can then access it IF they can find it (which is MUCH more difficult than you might think!!!!!!!!)
I see that they list some recently released docs, like some things related to Hillary's server, but I'm sure there are 10,000's of other doc's
that have been requested which I would have no idea how to search. Does anyone know how this works?
Unless I am mistaken how this works, many people can end up paying for the same info to be released and sent to them and then no one but these people
who requested the info has access to the data.
So I'm thinking of a collaborative effort where anyone requesting information goes through a "clearing house" site which submits the request -
maybe the request form is filled out by the member requesting the info to ensure they ask for exactly what they want - and then they pay for the cost
of the request. Now if the cost is too high, they can put a notice up saying "I want this data and can pay XXX of the total of XYZ" and then if
others are interested they donate to reach the needed amount. This could be covered by general donations or ones specific to the data requested.
Once the data is received it is catagorized, summarized, keyword lists/searches are made and created (to help other find if this document could be of
interest to their research) and then the document is stored on the site with various ways to find it. I think it would be a good idea to have a
discussion area for each request so people can talk about what they see in it, what they think, find interesting, concerning, what is missing, etc -
and also maybe suggestions or links to other documents which people may find interesting if researching this document.
Now if something like this already exists then can someone point me to the site where it exists? If it doesn't do you think this would be a useful
site for people (especially reporters, investigators, authors, students, lawyers, scientists, etc) and would it be of interest to you?
I'm looking for a productive product and if this isn't already a thing and it would be useful/popular, I would work on trying to get something like
this set up.