Help with making an Official Information Act (OIA) request

The New Zealand Herald is helping to re-establish a website designed to make requesting official information as easy as possible. From the Herald’s website:

The Herald is helping relaunch – a website which helps members of the public to make Official Information Act (OIA) requests. Rowan Crawford, a software developer, set up the FYI website after a 2009 Open Government event as the first version of this tool outside of the United Kingdom. Users of the FYI website can make requests and receive replies from various government agencies directly through the website.

The rest of the Herald article is here. Apart from helping individuals with the OIA process, the website publishes all requests and answers so anyone can follow what is happening on a particular topic or with an agency or department.  From a privacy perspective, if you want your request to be personal to you and whoever has the information, this website isn’t for you.  As the FYI website says on the form used to make a request:

Everything that you enter on this page, including your name, will be displayed publicly on this website forever.

Additional information on the  FYI website and privacy is here. .