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Useless ICO

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Re: Useless ICO

Postby miner » Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:01 pm

Spankymonkey wrote:
Goldensyrup wrote:The ICO are worse than 'not fit for purpose'. Populated by officers who have no legal knowledge and who adjudicate between public body legal professionals and complainants their default position is always to agree with the PB's position to save cost. Complainants concerned with exactly what the ICO have done over a long period of difficulty with a complaint concerning a PB can ask for a data access request.

The real problem with the ICO is that all PBs know how useless they are and will flout the legislation with complete impunity.


I agree. They belong in the same scrap heap as the IPCC. The IPCC being the very authority who are refusing to comply with my request.


You could add the SRA and the BSB to the scrapheap list, as well as every police PSD.
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Re: Useless ICO

Postby atticus » Sat Jan 07, 2017 5:55 pm

More extrapolation.
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Re: Useless ICO

Postby Spankymonkey » Sun Jan 08, 2017 8:35 am

b1969 wrote:I spend a lot of time on WDTK - I know the volunteers who run it and have advised on a new iteration of it. For all its faults it has helped to make a huge amount of information public. I suggest that again your view is skewed by your own experiences.


Goldensyrups criticism was not aimed at those who make FOI requests but those whose job it is to respond to them.

b1969 wrote:the Act has been a significant enhancement of our democracy, and it disappoints me to see unwarranted criticism of it.


Again, I saw no criticism of Goldensyrup aimed at the Act, but those whose job it is to ensure it is correctly enforced. I understand that the ICOs function forms part of the act but certainly not the substance of it.

I'm sure those authorities who wilfully and regularly fail to obey their obligations under FOI would thank you for your defence of them b1969, but thus far all you've managed to do is deflect GoldenSyrups criticism's away from those aspects you can't defend, and onto aspects that you can defend.

atticus wrote:More extrapolation.


Of which he is entitled to.
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Re: Useless ICO

Postby b1969 » Sun Jan 08, 2017 9:34 am

Spankymonkey wrote:Goldensyrups criticism was not aimed at those who make FOI requests but those whose job it is to respond to them.


So did you miss where I said:

b1969 wrote:I have worked in and commentated on the field of FOI since the Act was passed in 2000 (not 2002) and have...disclosed huge amounts of information



b1969 wrote:the Act has been a significant enhancement of our democracy, and it disappoints me to see unwarranted criticism of it.


Spankymonkey wrote:Again, I saw no criticism of Goldensyrup aimed at the Act, but those whose job it is to ensure it is correctly enforced. I understand that the ICOs function forms part of the act but certainly not the substance of it.


I'm not sure what the following passage is if it's not a criticism of how the FOI Act functions:

Goldensyrup wrote:The concept that 'I have a right to information' via the 2002 act only applies in my experience if the public body decide it wishes to release that information to you and when the don't when they should it is an uphill struggle in which the ICO are as useful as a chocolate teapot.


Spankymonkey wrote:I'm sure those authorities who wilfully and regularly fail to obey their obligations under FOI would thank you for your defence of them b1969, but thus far all you've managed to do is deflect GoldenSyrups criticism's away from those aspects you can't defend, and onto aspects that you can defend.


There are some recalcitrant public authorities - I have said so in this thread and it us both unfair and disingenuous of you not to acknowledge that. I'm not aware of any "deflection" - if you'd care to point me to where I've done this I'll readily address it.
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Re: Useless ICO

Postby Goldensyrup » Sun Jan 08, 2017 11:56 am

b1969 Many thanks for your recurring comment - absolute rubbish again for which I am graciously thankful. Spankymonkey summaries my beef with the ICO far more accurately than yourself. The Act if fine. The ICO effectiveness with regards to the act is woeful and that may be partly due to how they are financed. You will be aware that the Triennial Review of the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) 2016 made several recommendations of the ICO. That report highlighted a great deal of criticism from countless stakeholders which mirrors long standing criticism from many observers in this field. In short the ICO aren’t tough enough at enforcement, that they go for the easy targets, and that the quality of guidance and assistance from the ICO can be inconsistent and poor.
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Re: Useless ICO

Postby Spankymonkey » Sun Jan 08, 2017 2:27 pm

The concept that 'I have a right to information' via the 2002 act only applies in my experience if the public body decide it wishes to release that information to you and when the don't when they should it is an uphill struggle in which the ICO are as useful as a chocolate teapot.


Again, I see no criticism of the Act itself in that comment, just criticisms of those who dodge their obligations of disclosing information. My experiences align perfectly with this comment, if yours don't then lucky you. However there are many authorities on the WDTK website that routinely abuse FOI rules. The BBC is a notorious example of one of them. In my regard, they do so because they know they can get away with it. Lack of resources don't cut it as an excuse with an overfunded institution such as the BBC.

You may well have worked for a public authority that fulfilled it's FOI functions dutifully. You have experience of that. We don't. We can only base our opinions on our own experiences, not yours. And certainly not Atticus'.
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Re: Useless ICO

Postby b1969 » Sun Jan 08, 2017 5:40 pm

Spankymonkey wrote:The BBC is a notorious example of one of them. In my regard, they do so because they know they can get away with it. Lack of resources don't cut it as an excuse with an overfunded institution such as the BBC.'


Do you have an example of the BBC abusing the rules?
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Re: Useless ICO

Postby Spankymonkey » Sun Jan 08, 2017 6:00 pm

Do you have an example of the BBC abusing the rules?


https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/list/awa ... =%E2%9C%93

On this page alone are 5 requests, out of 25, that exceed the FOI response time limits. Something the BBC do repeatedly. The ICO don't care a damn for it.

I'm sure if I had the time to dig through the rest of the results I'd find a few hundred more. Not counting the times they hide behind the Journalism, Art or Literature exemption that they use almost by default when trying to avoid awkward questions. Again, something else the ICO couldn't give a damn about.

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/ ... refused_as

I'm sure the BBC are not the worst offender, but I don't have the time or the inclination to dig through WDTK to find other common instances; especially when you claim to have such an active involvement in the site and therefore should be aware of the consistency of these abuses.
Last edited by Spankymonkey on Sun Jan 08, 2017 6:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Useless ICO

Postby dls » Sun Jan 08, 2017 6:03 pm

I see a lot of cases where the BBC gets away with not providing replies, but the 'getting away' is simply the perfectly proper and adequate exemption for journalism materials. Tht people keep asking more or less the same question and keep getting the same answer seems to say more about the questioner than the BBC.
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Re: Useless ICO

Postby Spankymonkey » Sun Jan 08, 2017 6:20 pm

dls wrote:I see a lot of cases where the BBC gets away with not providing replies, but the 'getting away' is simply the perfectly proper and adequate exemption for journalism materials. Tht people keep asking more or less the same question and keep getting the same answer seems to say more about the questioner than the BBC.


It's only "perfectly proper and adequate" if the journalist exemption is applied correctly, which in many cases it is not. It is not a one size fits all exemption.

Those that ask the same question would not get the same answer David. They would get a refusal notice on the grounds of repetition. Nor are the vast majority of requests which are refused 'asking more or less the same question.'
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