Over lunch on the first day of the conference a representative from the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defence for Public Affairs discussed strategies to counteract critical viewpoints of the non-lethal weapons programme in the media. She encouraged those present to keep repeating a positive message particularly when there was a negative story published, and not to shy away from commenting. If there was negative coverage about an important programme that could be derailed by the general public or congress then they would really go after them, she said. She indicated that officials would give increased information access to bread and butter military journalists as opposed to the 60 minutes type journalists in return for more positive coverage. She also advocated a strategy of targeting military analysts working for various news media and getting them on message. She admitted, however, that they still dont know how to handle the bloggers. (emphasis mine)
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