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TRUTH CHECK: Is Homeland Security Working to Put Together a Database of Journalists and Blog writers?

CLAIM

The United States Department of Homeland Security is preparing to put together a database of reporters and bloggers.

True RATINGTrue

ORIGIN

On 3 April 2018, a solicitation for services posted by the United States Department of Homeland Security appeared on the United States Federal Business Opportunities site– a system that allows private contractors to bid on offering products or services to the United States federal government. That solicitation (displayed in complete below), titled “Media Keeping track of Providers,”looks for a specialist to create a searchable database of info about reporters, social networks “influencers,” and media outlets:

Provider shall make it possible for [the DHS’s National Defense and Program’s Directorate] to keep an eye on traditional news sources along with social media, determine any and all media protection related to the Department of Homeland Security or a specific occasion. Solutions will offer media comparison tools, style and rebranding tools, interaction tools, and the capability to recognize top media influencers.A draft of the solicitation sets out

the broad requirements the DHS has for the contractor’s digital product, however the one that has actually garnered the most press has actually been” Task 5: Media Engagement,”which needs the professional to provide:24/ 7 Access to a password safeguarded, media influencer database, including journalists, editors, reporters, social networks influencers, bloggers etc.Among the things this database

ought to have the ability to attain, the solicitation states, is an archive of detailed info on journalists and”influencers”, consisting of contact details and past coverage produced by that person: For each influencer discovered, [the database

shall have the ability to] present contact details and any other info that could be relevant, including publications this influencer writes for, and an introduction of the previous coverage released by the media influencer.The Department of Homeland Security also desires the database to supply

insight on the”belief”of an outlet’s coverage: [The database shall have the] ability to examine the media

coverage in regards to content, volume, belief, geographical spread, top publications, media channels, reach, AVE, leading posters, influencers, languages, momentum, circulation.Bloomberg Law, which initially reported on the solicitation, noted that seven companies have put bids so far. The due date for submissions is 13 April 2018. We connected to DHS to ask if media reports recommending this was an effort to assemble political details on journalists were unfounded, in addition to request for information about how this effort will boost nationwide security. In reaction, DHS directed us to a< a href =https://twitter.com/SpoxDHS/status/982372727309963264 target =_ blank > tweet from Homeland Security spokesperson Tyler Q. Houlton, who confirmed the information collection, but specified that recommendations of anything nefarious remained in the world of”tin foil hat wearing, black helicopter conspiracy theorists “: Despite what some reporters might suggest, this is nothing more than the standard practice of keeping track of existing occasions in the media. Any recommendation otherwise

is suitable for tin foil hat using, black helicopter conspiracy theorists. https://t.co/XGgFFH3Ppl!.?.!— Tyler Q. Houlton (@SpoxDHS) April 6, 2018 In response, we asked for information on the claim that this was”basic practice”and if that implied

that the Department of Homeland Security already gathered this data. Houlton sent us this reply: You are humiliating yourself with these questions and wild conspiracy

theories. Simply like you kept an eye on the media to discover this story, DHS does the very same. Enjoy your weekend. Feedback Sources Submitted

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