You don’t need to be a card-carrying member of the press corps to serve as a public watchdog over the government and elected officials.
First, the Freedom of Information Act applies to U.S. citizens and foreign nationals, not just members of the Fourth Estate. Since its passage, countless examples of government waste, fraud and mismanagement have been brought to light by citizens, activists and journalists.
In addition, a number of organizations now empower citizens to hold the government accountable. Sites like the Sunlight Foundation, Maplight.org, Opensecrets.org, Follow the Money and OpenCongress are increasingly giving ordinary citizens the ability to easily document the flow of special-interest money and how it influences the legislature. Some of the top government watchdogs:
Read More: By JD Lasica, Socialbrite.org