What is offered in exchange
Source code: Alaveteli source code
Alaveteli is the software extracted from WhatDoTheyKnow.com, developed by mySociety. For the last few months it's been extended to allow the use of different languages, and to make it more flexible, so it can work in jurisdictions other than the UK. The final goal is that an NGO or citizen in any country can launch a similar site in just a couple of weeks.
LicenseGeneral Public License
GNU General Public License for the free distribution, modification, and use of software
Manuals: Right to Know guide
The site will include a report about the citizens' access to information rights, as well as a 'requesters guide' that will explain in detail the process to follow. Although the guide will be focused in using the site as the channel, citizens could also send their requests directly to public bodies.
LicenseCC - Attribution - ShareAlike
Creative Commons License with attribution that only allows sharing under identical licensing conditions
Digital files: Public information: responses
Both the information requests and the responses are published openly on the site, with a Creative Commons license. Hence, a public repository is built over time containing all the responses from the administration.Access
Services: Simplifying request process
Although a citizen can ask a public body directly, there are some hurdles in practice: lack of knowledge about what to ask, or how to do it, since previous requests are not available; picking the right public body and finding the contact details; remembering to follow up the request in case of delay; and doing all this in private is hard and demoralising. The web is specifically designed to address all these issues.Access
Activismo para el reconocimiento de un derecho: Lobbying to pass an access to information law
An access to information law has been promised by the government party in Spain since 2004. Due to lack of knowledge in society, and hence lack of social pressure, its approval has been delayed a number of times. Spain's General Elections are now scheduled for November 20th, and both main parties have promised again that they'll pass the law. We must ensure they don't backtrack, and we believe the best way to do that is to show the poor current situation regarding transparency, and to show with real examples the use of access to information requests.
- Gathering contact details for public bodies Collaborate
- Spreading the news Collaborate
Solving questions from new users, verifying requests are not spam, handling email bounces...Collaborate
Backups, software updates...Collaborate
- Translate the site to Catalan Collaborate
- Translate the site to Basque Collaborate
- Translate the site to Galician Collaborate
Contributing € 10
Acknowledgment: Acknowledgement in the siteThe donor's name will appear in the Credits section of the site. Limited reward
45 units left
Contributing € 50
Services: Early access to the siteOn top of the acknowledgement in the site, the donor will be allowed to have early access to the site during the beta testing phase (3-4 weeks). Limited reward
5 units left
Contributing € 400
Acknowledgment: Acknowledgement in site and press releaseOn top of the other rewards, the donor will be acknowledged in a privileged section of the web, and in the press release at launch. If the donor is an institution, a logo will be included. Limited reward
2 units left
David Cabo is vice-president of Pro Bono Publico and creator of dondevanmisimpuestos.es, a web for visualizing the annual budgets from Spanish public administrations, developed in collaboration with the Open Knowledge Foundation (OKFN). Worked with mySociety and Access Info Europe in the development of the EU access to information site, AsktheEU.org. David launched the transparency initiative #adoptaundiputado (Adopt an MP) to crowdsource the parsing of Spanish parlamentaries' financial disclosure reports, and has colaborated with investigative journalists in the extraction and analysis of public records (Looting the Seas, ICIJ).Show profile
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By: David CaboTuderechoasaber.es will be a web site where any person will be able to send access to information...
€ 6.138 149%Embedding Code
- € 5.700
- € 4.100
- € 6.138
- 23 / 01 / 2012
Spain is the only country in Europe with more than one million inhabitants that doesn't have an access to information law, so getting information from public bodies is hard, although not impossible. We want to simplify the request process, and promote this right among the Spanish society, in order to achieve an effective accountability of our institutions.
How does it work? It's very easy: you can send a request to a public body through the site. We'll then send an email to that body, and publish the request. As soon as we receive a response we'll send it to you and will publish it automatically on the site. You'll then have to specify whether you're happy with the request, whether you need more information, or if you want to submit an appeal. This way, anyone can check the response and they won't have to make a request again.
Main featuresThe project will be based on the Alaveteli software, created from the well-known UK FOI site WhatDoTheyKnow.com developed by mySociety. Work is ongoing to translate the software and extend it to support different jurisdictions. As a first instance, AsktheEU.org was launched to handle access to information requests to EU institutions.
Any person will be able to sign up to the site and quickly send an access to information request free of charge to any Spanish public body. The site will hold contact details for all the bodies, and will forward the request by email. Both the requests and the responses will be published on the site, offering complete transparency of the process, and allowing any other person to access the information without submitting another request.
Transparency in the process also allows the society at large to acknowledge the good work of public bodies who reply, and to increase the pressure on those who don't. User will also be able to subscribe to responses for a given request, and the number of people who "want to know" will be clearly visible on the web. This way, any citizen or NGO can measure the success of their particular campaigns to obtain information, and leverage the public interest to demand an answer.
Why this is importantSpain doesn't have a Freedom of Information law, despite being an electoral promise by the party in power since 2004. This makes it very hard for citizens to demand information from public bodies.
This project wants to create an easy-to-use tool so anybody who has a question about the behaviour of a public body can submit it quickly, lowering many of the practical hurdles that exist nowadays, and thus allowing more thorough social and political accountability.
Goals of the crowdfunding campaignThe first goal is to highlight the lack of transparency in public institutions and to push for the approval of the access to information law promised since 2004. The site will show clearly those instances where public bodies deny information, so it can be used as a campaigning tool. An access to information law is essential to force public bodies to respond, and to give citizens the legal tools needed to demand an answer if they don't.
As soon as the law is passed, the site will help all citizens to submit a request easily, using previous ones as an example, and offloading them from the task of finding the needed contact details. Answers will be published immediately to spread the information as widely as possible.
Team and experienceThe project will be implemented by David Cabo and AccessInfo Europe, the same team who developed AsktheEU.org using WhatDoTheyKnow.com and Alaveteli as the starting point.
David Cabo is vice-president of Pro Bono Publico (blog.probp.org/) and creator of dondevanmisimpuestos.es, the Spanish version of the OKFN project Where Does My Money Go. He has a long experience as developer, and has worked in transparency-related projects for the last two projects, including the Spanish Open Data Hackathon AbreDatos (www.abredatos.es/).
Access Info Europe (www.access-info.org) is an NGO whose mission is to promote the access to information right in Europe. It's based in Spain, since it's the only European country with more than a million inhabitants that doesn't have an access to information law. In Spain they lead the Coalición Pro Acceso, a civil society movement campaigning for a law that allows for true transparency.