Washington DC [United States], April 7 (ANI): The US Department of Homeland Security has posted a contract request for "Media Monitoring Services," with the aim of compiling a database of journalists, bloggers and "media influencers" for the government.
A solicitation posted to the Federal Business Opportunities website, the main contracting website used by the federal government, outlines a number of requests from DHS related to media monitoring, CNN reported.
This includes a 24-hours-a-day, seven-days-a-week access to a "media influencer" database that would be made up of reporters, editors and bloggers.
The work request also seeks the ability to build lists of journalists based on beat, location, outlet type/size and journalist role. Creating an online "media influence database" is also included.
"Despite what some reporters may suggest, this is nothing more than the standard practice of monitoring current events in the media. Any suggestion otherwise is fit for tin foil hat wearing, black helicopter conspiracy theorists," DHS spokesman Tyler Houlton tweeted after the Committee to Protect Journalists tweeted out a link to a Forbes article about the request.
Forbes writer Michelle Fabio referred to the move as "today's installment of 'I'm Not Terrified, You Are,'" and said the details of the plan "are enough to cause nightmares of constitutional proportions, particularly as the freedom of the press is under attack worldwide." (ANI)