Another update on submitting a FOIA request, in the context of mine regarding Kryptos.

From our new friends at (redacted)

> Any suggestions on how to get an FOIA request for free or super low cost? (me)

(redacted) This is not a simple question.

Please note that if you are an individual noncommercial requester you

receive the first two hours of search time and the first 100 pages of
records at no cost, and you are not charged for review fees.

If you are a representative of the newsmedia, which includes a blog, you
are not charged search fees or the first 100 pages of duplication or
review fees.  You may be called upon to defend a claim of news media
status if you are a blogger.

In any case, it is usually possible to formulate a request so that search
time is small, keeping fees low.

If the request takes more than 20 days, the agency is not permitted to
charge search fees to a noncommercial requester at all.  After 20 days,
the agency cannot charge search or duplication fees to a newsmedia
requester.

You can also ask for a fee waiver, but the agencies structure it so that
they rarely grant such requests and it is usually not worth asking because
then the agencies use fee waivers as a way to tie up the request without
processing it.

Overall, it is helpful to use the opportunity to narrow a request if an
agency quotes very large fees.

Good luck,
-(redacted)

Kryptosfan

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