Artistic Assassins Attack Toxic Social Media, Watch Pork

If you’ve ever been interested in becoming a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) analyst, you can prepare for the job interview by reading DHS’s handy “Analysts’ Media Monitoring Desktop Reference Binder.”

News reports like this one on VentureBeat have rightly focused on the list of terms analysts are told to watch for “when monitoring social media sites.” (All the words in my nonsensical headline came from the list.)

However, the binder has other interesting sections. For example, there’s a ranking of media sources based on “credibility.” Of course, the major news networks and newspapers are at the top of the list (the “First Tier.”) The binder assures analysts that reports by “First Tier” news organizations generally “do not require corroboration.” (i.e. “I saw it on Fox News. It must be true!”)Weekly World News #002

“Blogs” are relegated to the “Third Tier,” alongside tabloid newspapers like the Weekly World News. Inexplicably, tabloids are deemed more trustworthy than mainstream magazines, which languish down on the “Fourth Tier.”

The DHS binder was released thanks to a Freedom of Information Act request by the Electronic Privacy Information Center (the link will take you to a helpful list of privacy protection tools.)

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