Weeks before the 2005 Freedom of Information Act came into effect, Tony Blair's government instituted a policy of automatically purging all calendar items and emails after three months.
The policy, which causes enormous dysfunction in government and civil service, has been continued by the next two governments, right up to the current day. It means that disputes about what had happened just a few months before cannot be settled unless someone deliberately saved the relevant messages. It's so broken that some senior staff have effectively given up on email.
Tony Blair is on record as hating the Freedom of Information Act, because it is used by journalists as "a weapon" against politicians.
One former permanent secretary told the newspaper that he thought there were problems with his BlackBerry when he noticed his emails kept disappearing.
Emails are only saved beyond three months if an individual saves them, which former Downing Street aides said caused “hugely frustrating” problems over staff having different recollections of what was discussed an agreed at meetings.
Sean Kemp, a former special adviser to Nick Clegg, said: “Some people delete their emails on an almost daily basis, others just try to avoid putting anything potentially interesting in an email in the first place.”
Downing Street accused of deliberate attempt to avoid freedom of information requests as ex-staff reveal 'dysfunctional' automated deletion system
[Matt Dathan/The Independent]
(Image: 090331, Tamaki Sono, CC-BY)
FIFA is the scandal-haunted governing body for world soccer/football; their internal report on corruption has leaked and it reveals a widespread culture of bribery and other corrupt practices.
The cable industry lobby has petitioned the FCC, asking it to ban states from investigating and taking action on deceptive advertising claims about broadband speed — seeking an end to actions like last year’s New York State Attorney General’s investigation into Time-Warner’s lies about its broadband offerings.
The NSO Group is an Israeli firm that describes itself as a “cyber warfare” company, dealing exclusively to governments, including the famously corrupt and dysfunctional government of Mexico. The NSO Group is presently for sale, with a $1 billion pricetag.
Despite the upfront cost, electric toothbrushes are much better at removing plaque than those freebies from the dentist’s office. For those who struggle to fill the American Dental Association’s recommended two minutes of brushing time, or anyone with limited dexterity, a sonic toothbrush can give your oral care routine a boost.To keep your chops healthy […]
Learning a new language will give your resume an upgrade, sure, but it will also provide a huge cognitive boost for mental tasks outside of translation and conversation. Bilingual brains have been shown to be better at handling multiple concurrent tasks, and gaining fluency in a new tongue is an amazing way to improve memory, […]
If you struggle to get a good night’s rest, consider replacing your pillows before dropping hundreds on a new mattress. You can give your tired neck a break with a 2-pack of memory foam pillows, available now in the Boing Boing Store.Each of these pillows is stuffed with cooling polyurethane foam that molds to your […]