[LINK] Re: FOI Act and Web-Site Design

Roger Clarke Roger.Clarke@xamax.com.au
Wed, 12 Feb 2003 15:02:31 +1100

I wrote to the DoCITA webmaster:
>And is your site going to send me a copy of the text I've typed into 
>this very annoying interface?  If not, you're actively denying me 
>the opportunity to archive my message, and to record a date and time 
>stamp so that I can follow it up later if you fail to answer me.
>I suggest that you check with your lawyers, to see whether your site 
>may be in breach of the Freedom of Information Act.

I got a prompt response to the underlying request for the org chart. 
There *was* a link on the home-page;  but it was embedded in a block 
of text, rather than being bulletised;  so I overlooked it.

But here's the continuation of correspondence re FOI:

Your way of handling enquiries provides my text and time-stamp back 
to me.  But it would be helpful if you indicated that on your 
web-form, so that the poster knows that he'll get a copy back.

It would be helpful if you would make the box larger, so that the 
person can see what they're typing.

Under *those* circumstances, I would agree that you would not be in 
breach of the FOI Act, because you'd then be taking reasonable steps 
to facilitate enquiries.

Roger Clarke              http://www.anu.edu.au/people/Roger.Clarke/
Xamax Consultancy Pty Ltd, 78 Sidaway St, Chapman ACT 2611 AUSTRALIA
                 Tel: +61 2 6288 1472, and 6288 6916
mailto:Roger.Clarke@xamax.com.au            http://www.xamax.com.au/

Visiting Professor in the eCommerce Program, University of Hong Kong
Visiting Professor in the Cyberspace Law & Policy Centre, U.N.S.W
Visiting Fellow in Computer Science, Australian National University