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How journalism works

Martin Rosenbaum | 12:08 UK time, Saturday, 17 June 2006

An academic with an interest in UFOs uses freedom of information to request a report from the Ministry of Defence. The MoD publishes it on their disclosures log. Its main conclusion gets reported, widely. The report is extremely long, three volumes, 465 pages. It sits on the MoD website, for a month so far. It contains another very interesting story, about what the UK may know about whether the US Air Force is building secret spy planes which can cross the sky at 3,000mph. Does anyone spot it? Well, in this case, yes - Newsnight producer Meirion Jones did.

It all goes to show that there is something out there - the story. Often 'hidden' in lengthy reports on official websites. FOI is going to make more reports like this publicly available. Let's hope someone reads them properly.

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