Delegates at the Society of Editors Conference in Newcastle emerged from the session on Freedom of Information with a mixture of relief and unease. Relief because Lord Falconer had just revealed that there will be no charge for much of the information requested by journalists under the new legislation.
And the unease? That’s from the message, drummed home by several of the speakers, that with just a couple of months before the Act comes into force, many journalists are ill-equipped to take advantage of it.
It’s been a long, winding road that’s led to the dawn of the FoIage on New Year’s Day. How many of us are really ready to make sure it comes in with a bang, rather than a wimper?