Anorak News | Government’s Media Monitoring Unit Monitors Blogs

Government’s Media Monitoring Unit Monitors Blogs

by | 22nd, November 2007

DIZZY asks: “What should I ask the blog monitors next?”

Back in August, Iain Dale noticed an Financial Times report that said the Government’s Central Office of Information was setting up a blog monitoring team. Being ever so curious about the veracity of it all I decided to send a Freedom of Information request saying,

Please provide copies of briefing summaries for the past three months made by the COI Media Monitoring Unit which reference the political blog (Iain Dale)

I also sent one requesting copies of breifing summaries referencing Guido as well. For pure vanity reasons I asked about myself as well as I needed to have my ego shattered. However the CoI hasn’t provided any meaningful information in response, they said,

I am writing to advise you that the Department has decided not to disclose the information you requested on 25th October 2007.

The Media Monitoring Unit does not normally monitor blogs. Any extracts from blogs that may from time to time be picked up are already freely available in the public domain, and as a result are exempt from disclosure under Section 21 of the Freedom of Information Act – Information accessible by other means.

Great response huh? They’ve rather cleverly exploited a whole in my question and assumed that I want the content of what might have come from a blog rather than simply wanting to know when blogs might have been included in summaries. Guess I should change the question, any suggestions greatly welcomed.

PDF response

By Dizzy 

Posted: 22nd, November 2007 | In: Reviews Comments (4) | TrackBack | Permalink