Tuesday, December 04, 2018
FCC denies NYT appeal, says producing requested records is too hard. The Federal Communications Commission has once again refused a New York Times request for records that the Times believes might shed light on Russian interference in the net neutrality repeal proceeding. The Times made a Freedom of Information Act (FoIA) request in June 2017 for FCC server logs and sued the FCC in September of this year over the agency's ongoing refusal to release the records. The court case is still pending, but the Times had also appealed directly to the FCC to reverse its FoIA decision. The FCC denied that appeal in a decision released today.
The FCC gave several reasons for not making public the server log of the public comments, including that the release would invade the privacy of the people who left public comments: "Having concluded that there exists both a substantial private interest in preserving the confidentiality of the IP addresses and a public interest in understanding the operation of the comment process, we must balance these two competing interests against one another. In doing so, we conclude that the privacy interest considerably outweighs the public interest and that disclosure would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy."
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