US launches “IC On The Record” Tumblr site to help promote transparency in surveillance activities

US launches “IC On The Record” Tumblr site to help promote transparency in surveillance activities ...

The United States government today launched a website dedicated towards helping the public better understand what its various intelligence agencies are doing. The site, called IC On The Record, comes just days after it was promised by President Obama as one of his reforms to improve his intelligence community’s standing in the public arena.

One of the main things that’s noteworthy about this new site is that it’s not on a .gov domain extension — instead, it’s hosted on Tumblr. Perhaps the government’s thinking is that in order to propagate educational information about what it’s doing, it’s best to use a social blogging platform.

In its first post, the website features a letter from Director of National Intelligence James Clapper who says that IC On The Record will be used to “provide the public with direct access to factual information related to the lawful foreign surveillance activities carried out by the Intelligence Community.”

The Obama Administration has a pretty long way to restore public confidence in its intelligence agencies as some still feel that American citizens are being spied on, even as the President refutes that. Although his words aren’t as powerful when you consider the fact that the Washington Post reported today that the National Security Agency (NSA) looked at thousands of Americans’ emails before the program was struck down by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC).

The site contains information on various topics, including official statements, declassified documents, testimony from officials, speeches and interviews, fact sheets, and more. It also includes commentary from leaders in the intelligence field.

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Photo credit: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

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