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Burgum unveils new website to quickly inform North Dakotans

BISMARCK - In an effort to better inform citizens of major events and battle misinformation, North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum and other state leaders unveiled a new website Wednesday, Jan. 25.NDResponse.gov will provide information during events tha...

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Cliff Heyne, a program administrator for the North Dakota IT department, explains the workings of NDResponse.gov, a new comprehensive website to provide information to North Dakota residents during issues of significant public impact and involving a multi-agency response. NDResponse.gov also includes related social media sites. Tom Stromme / Bismarck Tribune
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BISMARCK - In an effort to better inform citizens of major events and battle what officials described as misinformation, North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum and other state leaders unveiled a new website Wednesday, Jan. 25.

NDResponse.gov will provide information during events that have a "significant impact on the public and involve multi-agency responses," Burgum said in a news conference at the state Capitol. As of Wednesday afternoon, it showcased information on the monthslong protests over the Dakota Access Pipeline and potential spring flooding.

Burgum also announced the formation of the Joint Information Center, an organization that includes public information officers from various state agencies so the state ensures it gets "consistent and accurate information across to the public at a time when social media can sometimes be driving messages which are not factually accurate."

NDResponse also has a Facebook and Twitter page.

The section on the Dakota Access Pipeline protests includes a media resources page, a daily activity report and a "myth vs. fact" page on the contentious project that has drawn people from across the country to Morton County.

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While citing the "enormous efforts" put in before he took office last month, Burgum said the state could do a better job projecting its message on the pipeline debate. He said state leaders have to keep up with rapid changes in media and technology.

"There's so much information available for free, but there's also so much misinformation available for free," the former software executive said. "We're in a new world, and we have to play well in that world."

Burgum said the site was created with existing funding and staff.

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Gov. Doug Burgum. Jesse Trelstad/Forum News Service

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