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Lawsuit for Facebook “Blocked” Lists

It’s a hot button topic: are government officials creating government records that are subject to OPRA when they utilize social media? A judge will soon decide.

CJ Griffin was recently interviewed by Fios 1 News television regarding a lawsuit she filed on behalf of a requestor seeking a list of users that various government officials have blocked from their official Facebook accounts.

The Record also covered the lawsuit.

We think the answer is obvious: if a government official conducts official government business on a social media account (such as updating constituents on official matters), than those accounts are government records and are subject to access under OPRA.

A “block” list is available on both Twitter and Faceook. Sample request language:

“Pursuant to OPRA and the common law, I seek the list of blocked users from the Facebook or Twitter account of _________. The URL of that account is _______________.”

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