Oklahoma Supreme Court's Rule Prevents Bulk Release of Case Information
Tulsa, OK On October 8, 2009, the Supreme Court of Oklahoma modified their procedures for the release of the records of case information, in an attempt to bar the bulk release of case information.
The Court, which has historically maintained an online list of all criminal and civil court rulings through the Oklahoma Supreme Court Network and the On Demand Court Records websites, established a new internal rule which will prevent the disclosure of "all or a significant subset of electronic case information" . The rule comes in response to a request from a business for all the Supreme Court records, which would have cost the business between $20,000 to $40,000 for the Courts to produce it. The court claims that the rule was made through consultation with the Oklahoma Open Records Act and the policies of supreme courts in other states. They also claimed that the rule was in compliance with current open records legislation and would not prevent future compliance.
The rule also allowed the Supreme Court to contract out the online access of all state judicial proceedings to a private company.  The company, KellPro Inc., signed a $1 million contract with the courts to make the On Demand Court Records website the official provider for open records requests for court cases in Oklahoma. The for-profit company is required to make copies of all case briefs available to the public, free of charge, but has advertised new expanded features including case tracking and access the images of scanned documents for monthly and yearly subscription fees.  These subscription fees for profit bring into question the release of open records to turn a profit.
The position of the Court
Chief Justice James Edmondson claimed that the rule is a first step in organizing a comprehensive online database that would allow individuals to access briefs from any particular court case. By combining the two separate websites under a private provider, Edmondson claims that, “Eventually, we hope within the next two to three years, we will have a unified case management system where all documents in all 77 counties that are filed with the courts will be open to the public without charge on the Oklahoma State Court Network or its successor,” 
Response from the open records community
The National Freedom of Information Coalition has also criticized the new rule, claiming that it establishes a legal exception to open records requests, not present within the Oklahoma Open Records Act itself. 
- Tulsa World, "Court's new rule on records raises concerns"
- FOI Oklahoma, "Oklahoma Supreme Court bars bulk distribution of electronic case information"
- News OK, "Oklahoma open records law ruling draws fire"
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- ↑ 1.0 1.1 Tulsa World, "Court's new rule on records raises concerns"
- ↑ 2.0 2.1 2.2 News OK, "Oklahoma open records law ruling draws fire"
- ↑ FOI Oklahoma, "Oklahoma Supreme Court bars bulk distribution of electronic case information"
State of Oklahoma
Oklahoma City (capital)