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The Obama administration is embarking on a fundamental overhaul of Voice of America and other official broadcasters — one that seeks to adapt their traditional diplomatic missions to the era of Facebook and Twitter...the need for the United States to get its message across to an often hostile world is greater than ever.

A blogger whose frank and witty thoughts on Syria's uprising, politics and being a lesbian in the country shot her to prominence was last night seized by armed men in Damascus. Several Facebook pages had been set up on Monday evening calling for her release...and activists were tweeting using the hashtag FreeAmina.

No plugging of Twitter accounts or Facebook pages on French broadcast airwaves. France's audiovisual authority says that TV and radio stations that promote their sites on the two gargantuan social media services on air are actually engaging in secret - and unfair - advertising.

France and the United States have long been engaged in a friendly war for global prestige and pre-eminence -- especially in the technological and cultural spheres. It is not entirely irrelevant to situate this latest French obstacle to American technological and cultural influence within the longstanding animosity between France and the U.S. in these spheres.

When Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt couldn't reach his counterpart in Bahrain by traditional means of communication, he turned to Twitter...Many politicians and diplomats worldwide have already embraced social media as a tool to communicate with the public...

The news transmitted by the U.S. government to Cuba via Radio/Television Martí is keeping pace with the times in its use of social networks and multimedia platforms. Internet, Facebook, Twitter and text messaging are the latest media being used to aid the free flow of news to the island.

In less than a year, the external affairs ministry's twitter account has collected over 10,000 followers, pioneering the outreach of government organisations on social media platforms.

Last year, the Public Diplomacy division of the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) began an experiment....[W]e see social media not just as a tool for disseminating information; it is also valuable for getting feedback, listening, engaging with people, so that a relationship is built.

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