Sunlight Foundation: What we’ve learned about the Trump administration’s changes to government websites won’t shock you

Sunlight Foundation: What we’ve learned about the Trump administration’s changes to government websites won’t shock you. “Over the past seven months, we’ve seen changes to federal agency websites, including at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Department of Energy (DOE), the Department of the Interior, and the State Department, as well as changes to the White House’s website. These updates include changes to websites that provide educational information, insight into the obligations and past actions of agencies, plans and work toward upcoming policy, and access to and context for government documents. These sites have spanned topics like climate change, renewable energy, fossil fuels, clean water, agriculture, animal welfare, and general science policy.”

Sunlight Foundation: If the White House does not publish visitor logs, Congress should mandate disclosure

Sunlight Foundation: If the White House does not publish visitor logs, Congress should mandate disclosure. “Today, Sunlight announced its support for the Making Access Records Available to Lead American Government Openness (MAR-A-LAGO) Act. This bill would require the White House to publish the visitor logs that are collected by the Secret Service when members of the public are vetted to enter 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.”

Sunlight Foundation Will Keep Going

It is great to hear that the Sunlight Foundation will keep on keeping on. “Today, we announce that Sunlight will continue its role as a nonpartisan advocate for open government under the leadership of Executive Director John Wonderlich. John has been a strong steward of the organization’s principles and mission during this period of transition, and over the last decade. Alex Howard will be the new Deputy Director, helping to lead Sunlight into the next stage of its evolution.”

Sunlight Foundation: Connecting freedom of information to open data: How to build a better FOIA.gov

Sunlight Foundation: Connecting freedom of information to open data: How to build a better FOIA.gov. “Over the past year, we’ve explored different ways that FOIA could work better without more legislative action in Congress. Here’s a specific breakdown how to use the reformed law to fix FOIA, from how the remade statute can be leveraged to drive positive change to an affirmative vision for a new FOIA.gov.”

ProPublica Will Get Politwoops

Politwoops is being taken over by ProPublica. ProPublica is taking on other Sunlight Labs services as well. “The move follows the non-profit Sunlight Foundation’s announcement last month that it intended to discontinue its own tech development activities, under Sunlight Labs, and hand over its most promising projects to other entities.”

Sunlight Foundation: The local projects that are making police complaint data open and accessible

The Sunlight Foundation has a roundup of projects underway to help make police complaint data more transparent. “Access to civilian complaints about police behavior make it possible for the public to help hold problematic individuals accountable, leading to a better quality of policing and improvements in police-community relations. While we’re starting from a low point in public access to this information, several current projects give hope that this situation is in the process of changing.”

Sunlight Labs Archiving As It Shuts Down Thanks to GitHub and Internet Archive

The closure of Sunlight Labs makes me very sad, but I’m impressed with how responsibly it’s being handled. “GitHub has committed to host the Sunlight Labs repository as an open source community project independent of Sunlight Foundation…. Beyond repos, we have loads of content and data we want to preserve. Mark Graham and his team at the extraordinary and audacious Internet Archive are partnering with us over the coming weeks to archive it ALL. From the Wayback Machine for our domains and subdomains, to a special Collection at the Internet Archive for Sunlight’s datasets – they’ll make sure you can still access our information even after Labs is gone.”

The Atlantic: Is This the End of the Sunlight Foundation?

Oh man, I hope not. From The Atlantic: Is This the End of the Sunlight Foundation? “You’d think the Sunlight Foundation would be raring for a fight. Since its inception, in January 2006, the nonprofit has advocated for a new, digitally savvy vision of open government. It has pushed for campaign-finance reform and defended the Freedom of Information Act. It’s made services like Politiwoops, which collects and preserves tweets after politicians delete them from their official accounts; and it’s become a flagship for the civic-tech movement, which aims to build online tools for the public good. So developers and designers with a public-minded bent were surprised to discover that, in this of all years, the nonprofit seemingly has no idea what to do with itself.”

The Sunlight Foundation and IFTTT

Poynter takes a look at The Sunlight Foundation and IFTTT. “The Sunlight Foundation has put IFTTT to work by bridging its Congress API to various online services. The foundation automatically pulls in lots of data from the government — the locations and zip codes of congress members, for example, and the crush of information that accompanies the legislature’s routines: floor votes, hearings, bills, amendments and nominations. “

Sunlight Foundation Needs Help Identifying Lobbyist “Superdelegates”

The Sunlight Foundation is looking for crowdsourcing help to suss out which Democrat “superdelegates” are also lobbyists. “Not everyone who does what most of us would think of as lobbying is registered as a lobbyist. Individuals only have to register if they spend more than 20 percent of their time lobbying, and the number of registered lobbyists has actually declined as the disclosure requirements increased. Instead, these individuals might now describe themselves as a ‘policy adviser’ or ‘government affairs specialist,’ and there is little enforcement against those who don’t register but still perform lobbying activities. “