Newspapers and magazines can be considered as almost extinct now because of the growing trend wherein news about literally everything can now be found in any digital platform. People don’t need to get themselves a copy of a newspaper during the morning on their way to work and they no longer have to grab a copy of their favorite fashion magazine just to be up to date on the latest trends. All of these things are just one click away.
However, the Department of Homeland Security wishes to have their hands on every single news source, both digital and print. Will it be a good idea or something that would just be considered as a waste of money? Continue reading to find out more about it.
DHS Wants Every News Source
The Department of Homeland Security just announced their plans on monitoring thousands of news websites, not just within the United States but all over the world so they could identify which are the top media influencers in between journalists, editors, bloggers and other foreign news writers.
Based on a request information that was released on April 3, the said government body is actually looking for a contractor that would have the capability to aid them in doing this. Even if they didn’t actually reveal how much this deal would cost, they mentioned how they think this would be a great way for them to find out how influential it could be. They are looking into tracking hundreds and thousands of news sources including those in social media.
The statement said that they are requiring services that would have the power to use tools that could identify which are the top media influencers so they could use the data that will be gathered by their partners with the federal, state, and local government bodies.
Since they are planning on doing this internationally they are also making it a requirement to gather data in more than a hundred languages such is news in Chinese, Russian, Arabic, and be able to translate all of them in English.
Experts say that this may actually require people and not just a simple tool because there are phrases and words in different languages that do not exactly have an English equivalent or a single word might mean two different things in English.
This can be quite a shock for some since the media, especially in the digital form have been on the rocks especially with some foreigners being able to influence such serious matters like delivering fake news during the United States presidential elections.
However, the DHS is determined to look for what they believe would help them gather all the news that they would need. They also said that whoever gets selected will be required to set up an online media influence that will serve as a database wherein users could actually browse it based on where it is, and how trending it is.
For every influencer that will be found p, they would have to present the details that will be asked of them, since these would contain the information that the influencers write for. There are actually now seven companies who have said to be interested in becoming one of the vendors of this DHS contract but the spokesman of the Department of Homeland Security refused to make any comments for now.
This includes news from over a hundred different languages
Why Only Now?
One of the things that they mentioned aside from getting information is that this would also help the National Protection Programs Directorate or the NPPD to be able to do a better job at ensuring the safety of the people both on the physical aspect and the cyberinfrastructure.
Tech experts believe this is the DHS’s response to what happens with the interference of Russian organizations on delivering fake news over social media. They think that having media vendors that would identify which are the top media influencers would help them take things under control.
DHS plans on monitoring news all over the world
But then again, it would seem like this is a start of the government actually trying to interfere with the media and gaining power over them that freedom of the press may no longer be applied. According to the Freedom House, who is monitoring the global media freedom, said that for the past decade, the media has actually reached its lowest and this move by the DHS could make things even worse for media outlets and journalists.