Federal government has spent more than $20M on monitoring massive log of keywords

One of the things I miss most about my time in government is having this media monitoring service (media scans). Helpful for officials as well as the political level.

And the expanded monitoring of ethnic and social media made our jobs easier (hard to replicate this completely through services like Feedly):

“News monitoring is conducted to track key public policy issues that impact the government of Canada agenda and to assess the effectiveness of government of Canada communications,” Raymond Rivet, director of corporate and media affairs for the Privy Council Office, said in an email.

“To identify reporting that is relevant to the government of Canada, suppliers use search terms as an aid to identifying reporting that may be of interest.”

Opposition party critics for various portfolios are also part of the media monitoring search terms from several departments, as are the names of dozens of journalists.

And don’t ask the Canadian Security Intelligence Service CSIS about its media monitoring activities. The agency has refused to release details of any contracts, ostensibly for security reasons.

About 300 of the roughly 1,100 pages of media monitoring search terms are from Citizenship and Immigration, and the massive department of Employment and Social Development, whose minister Jason Kenney, is also the minister for multiculturalism.

Of the government’s more than $20-million in media monitoring contracts since December 2012, one of the largest individual contracts was for ethnic media monitoring.

Federal government has spent more than $20M on monitoring massive log of keywords

About Andrew
Andrew blogs and tweets public policy issues, particularly the relationship between the political and bureaucratic levels, citizenship and multiculturalism. His latest book, Policy Arrogance or Innocent Bias, recounts his experience as a senior public servant in this area.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: