FEMA Solicits Firms to Monitor Media Coverage of Their Activities

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Activist Post

FEMA still seems to be smarting from the media accurately reporting their disastrous response to Hurricane Katrina, and the increased exposure of their intended use for so-called “FEMA Camps.”

This week they announced that they are seeking public relations and media monitoring help from private contractors.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) opened bidding for “commercial media broadcast monitoring service” on a February 15th post on the government’s Federal Business Opportunities website.

FEMA is seeking media monitoring firms who will be responsible for rapidly monitoring, archiving, and measuring all news and transcripts related to their activities 24/7.  They are expected to be able to evaluate the “publicity value” of media coverage and possess “editing capabilities.”

Other responsibilities include the distribution of live and pre-recorded materials to the broadcast news, independent media and on the Internet, and “to monitor the effectiveness of public affairs messaging.”

Below is the full text of FEMA’s Statement of Work: Division of Public Affairs Broadcast Media Monitoring Service:

Purpose:  The purpose of this Statement of Work is to establish a service agreement subscription with a commercial broadcast media monitoring service. FEMA is looking to select the best option for the modernizing and standardizing the media efforts for Joint Field Office (JFO) TV news monitoring and FEMA headquarters broadcast operations.

Background: The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Office of External Affairs is responsible for the effective dissemination of accurate information to the public concerning FEMA’s programs, missions and goals for emergency management. FEMA External Affairs provides primary support to the FEMA Administration, Deputy Administrator and FMEA senior leadership, with primary responsibility for the communication of agency goals, objectives and accomplishments. In addition, the Office is responsible got the preparation and distribution of critical response and recovery information to state and local officials, agency stakeholders and general public.

This on-going requirement has FEMA External Affairs staff deployed to Joint Field Offices (JFO), who continually monitor local broadcast media news reposts as they relate to agency operations in the field. In additional, requirements are needed at the FEMA Headquarters to update and standardize a method for capturing local broadcast news from a JFO, as well as, nationally broadcast news and cable outlets.

Within the Office of External Affairs, the Public Affairs Division is responsible for the monitoring, archiving, and measurement of media representation, which includes broadcast TV, radios, and cable news media. The broadcast media are relied upon to deliver disaster information in a reliable, efficient and expeditions manner. Both live and pre-recorded materials are distributed to the broadcast news and independent production media via satellite transmission, the internet and other delivery services. To monitor the effectiveness of public affairs messaging, and respond to critical events, FEMA requires the ability to monitor and retrieve clips and transcripts from network and local television affiliates in a rapid manner upon demand 24/7 through an on-line distribution service.

Scope of Work:  The contractor shall provide at least 11 accessible accounts or individual passwords to access the service (with a potential surge capacity of 40 if needed during extremely high disaster activity). The service shall provide unlimited online access to clips from all U.S. television networks and major Nielson markets 24/7. The service shall provide a means to download an unlimited number of clips and transcripts for internal FEMA distribution to key individuals upon demand. The service shall provide media statistics including the audience exposure and publicity value. The service shall have a means of delivering clips or notification of clips via email to key individuals as assigned by FEMA.

The service shall allow for unlimited digital clips, unlimited keyword searches, permanent archive, and editing capabilities. It would be preferable not to need to purchase additional equipment or software.

Contract Period:The performance period for the subscription is one year from the date of the subscription initiation with three (3) annual options for renewal.

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