More than 1.1m people have signed an petition against road tolls on the Downing Street e-petition site created by MySociety.
According to the Daily Mail, “one high-ranking member of the Government” believes whoever thought of this experiment in digital democracy was “a prat” for giving opponents of the Government a platform.
A leader in the Daily Express encourages readers to take a moment to sign other petitions on the Downing Street site. For once, I agree with “the world’s greatest newspaper”.
One Downing Street petition every journalist should sign is the one expressing opposition to the Government’s plans to amend the The Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004, which would make it far more difficult for journalists to use the Freedom of Information Act.
That petition was created by journalist Tom Griffin, who makes the case for signing it on his blog.
As we all know by now, the effect of the Government’s proposed changes would be to make the Freedom of Information Act far more difficult for journalists to use.
Time is also running out to express your support for the Press Gazette petition on the same subject:
We, the undersigned, urge the Government not to undermine the effectiveness of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 by passing into law the Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2007.
According to the Government’s own independent review, the proposed changes will result in more than 17,000 FoI questions a year being rejected by local, regional and national public bodies on purely financial grounds, irrespective of the public interest.
We are particularly concerned that the rule changes will, according to the independent review, have a disproportionate effect on journalists and therefore undermine the vital role they play in British democracy.
We’re not as high-tech (yet) — to support this, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, job title and the organization you work for.