Home / Be The Change / Antiwar / Crowdfunding Project Nearing Its Goal, Promises to Release CIA Database to the World

Crowdfunding Project Nearing Its Goal, Promises to Release CIA Database to the World


U.S. researcher Michael Best launched a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign aimed at raising an intial goal of $10,000 to make freely available the Central Intelligence Agency’s (CIA) entire database of over 13 million declassified documents. Since the launch of the campaign the public has resoundingly responded to the fundraiser.

Main goal: Equipment ($10,000) – FUNDED!
Stretch goal 1:
FOIA requests ($11,000) – FUNDED!
Stretch goal 2: One month full-time focus ($15,000) – Not yet

After being basically stonewalled by the intelligence agency in providing digital records;  the researcher approached the problem with a different strategy.

According to a report by Tech Week Europe:

Best, who previously worked with The Internet Archive project and with MuckRock, which facilitates US Government Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, said he hopes to make a full-time job out of digitising and uploading the more than 10 million pages of documents made available via the CIA Records Search

The documents, released under the CIA’s 25 Year Programme, under which information 25 years or older is made available to the public, include records from the first five Directors of Central Intelligence, intelligence photographs and information on more exotic subjects, such as “Star Gate”, a 25-year effort that “used remote viewers who claimed to use clairvoyance, precognition, or telepathy to acquire and describe information about targets that were blocked from ordinary perception”, according to Best.

While these documents are in theory freely available to researchers, in reality, there are only four dedicated terminals from which the documents can be accessed, located at the National Archives and Records Administration.

Since the only means allowed of making copies is printing them out, Best intends to print out millions of pages and then scan them back into digital form using a high-speed scanner. The materials will be uploaded to The Internet Archive, a San Francisco-based non-profit makes digital material freely available for public access.

“There are over 10 million pages of CIA documents that have never seen the light of day. It’s time to change that,” Best said in the project description.

According to Tech Week Europe:

Best, who has previously published large collections of documents related to the assassination of US president John F. Kennedy and declassified information about UFOs, also works with MuckRock, which in 2014 filed a FOIA request asking the CIA to make CREST available to it in digital form.

Following a lawsuit by MuckRock, the CIA said it would deliver the database on 1,200 compact discs, but said delivery would take six to 28 years to fulfil and would cost more than $100,000, due to the time and staffing resources needed to review the documents to ensure no classified information was found in them.

Best estimates it will take several years to complete the project, largely dependent upon funding allowing for him to work full-time on the digitization of records. According to Best, once the records are fully uploaded he will provide digital copies to WikiLeaks and the New York Times, with the print outs being donated to a public institution such as a library or university for posterity.

For as little as $1, people can assist in creating a database of formerly secret knowledge that the public will have the ability to access and research. The freeing of information that has been compartmentalized and kept secret from the public by the CIA is a step in towards a more open and transparent society.

Jay Syrmopoulos is a political analyst, free thinker, researcher, and ardent opponent of authoritarianism. He is currently a graduate student at University of Denver pursuing a masters in Global Affairs. Jay’s work has been published on Ben Swann’s Truth in Media, Truth-Out, Raw Story, MintPress News, as well as many other sites. You can follow him on Twitter @sirmetropolis, on Facebook at Sir Metropolis and now on tsu.

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    • Begging for likes his fucking pathetic

    • Wouldn’t it be great if desperate and needy were attractive!

    • You’re a special kind of idiot if you don’t understand why these pages ask for them. Algorithms through facebook are meant to hide these types of pages.

    • Instead of what we have now, which is that an officer who does something bad is protected by his department, and if it’s bad enough they seal his file and transfer him… ?

    • Chris Hubbell Its the Nazi way

    • Can an elected officer really change the system? This is the fundamental question we have to ask ourselves because if they can’t…

    • It’s basically saying the same for the people who supported the opposite party…

  • By their own words we will condemn them.

  • I don’t trust it. I found that whenever a Government agency , a promise , and money come together then chances arethat something sinister is about to happen . And it’s called CORRUPTION. Pireod.

    • Period**

    • For some reason I keep seeing people spell it as “pireod”. Kinda strange

    • That’s common core for ya. Or them thinking they’re being funny. Or they really just can’t spell.

  • I think there are some that will never be made public. The JFK papers were meant to be declassified in 2013. 2017 is the next scheduled date, but even then I doubt the truth will be made public.


    • They are waiting for the next generations to die off so they have a generation so clueless to history that they can rewrite the events that took place.

    • Or the people involved, I’d imagine there’s a few still around that had something to do with the assassination or the coverup.

  • My external hard drive is ready.

  • scary stuff. needs to be freely out there

  • Sounds like a terrible idea.

  • Somewhere in that pile of information, they most likely have all the information on the San Bernardino attackers they would have needed to stop them before they were successful.

  • I would never donate my money to this cause. Even if the documents are released and 100% authentic and have world changing information, most people in society still wouldn’t care and nothing would come of it in the end. Sadly it’s a waste of money to donate.

    • “The ideas of the ruling class are in every epoch the ruling ideas…” K.Marx, regardless, Universe is still in progress

  • No More Secrets!

  • Well, if they have nothing to hide….

  • Even if it’s released the sheep still won’t believe the truth. ….smh

  • So this guy is nearing $15k to access documents that can be accessed for free?

  • Cam Alft

    great idea……………..

  • righttttt. pay us or we won’t release it. No, i didn’t read it. But bitch, please. You either have it or you don’t .

  • We’d love to help however we can 🙂