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Radio News: DHS, some Congressional reps looking for lists of media influences

Apr 09, 2018 10:50 pm
Bloomberg reports about a plan at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to monitor news sources and compile a database of journalists, editors, foreign correspondents, and bloggers in an effort to locate the top “media influencers.” The Department put out a request for information April 3 to find a contractor to do the job. “Services shall provide media comparison tools, design and rebranding tools, communication tools, and the ability to identify top media influencers,” according to the statement. DHS agencies have, “a critical need to incorporate these functions into their programs in order to better reach federal, state, local, tribal, and private partners,” the announcement said. That's more than 290,000 global news sources: online, print, broadcast, cable, radio, trade and industry publications, local, national and international outlets, and social media. This comes as 19 U.S. lawmakers sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions last month, asking for Qatar-based Al Jazeera to register as a foreign agent because it “often directly undermines” U.S. interests with even-handed coverage of the Middle East that is not all pro-Israel like most media outlets. Ted Cruz, a Senator from Texas, suggests it is not just the journalism of well-respected Al Jazeera that Americans need to fear. "The Department of Justice's recent designation of Russia's RT America as a foreign agent, as well as the questionable practices of Al Jazeera and China Central Television, strongly suggest the presence of a subversive threat in the United States," he said.