twitter

In the age of digital diplomacy, governments often turn to social media following a crisis, be it a terror attack or natural disaster. Social media may be used by governments in order to comment on crises as they develop, offer a narrative of events and demonstrate that the government is functioning and attempting to regain control of the situation. 

On Turkey's social media handling of the recent coup attempt.

Wouldn’t it be great if your government owned the English name of your country on Twitter? You could proudly @mention your country or support your national team with a tweet. Today all English-language country names have been registered on Twitter; however, only 23 governments and state tourism boards have secured their English-language country name on Twitter, up from only nine, four years ago.

July 27, 2016

A year after the State Department opened a data center in the Middle East aimed at countering Islamic State’s online messaging, the U.S. plans to inaugurate a similar outpost in Malaysia in coming months. Like its counterpart in the United Arab Emirates, the new center will seek to undermine the terrorist group’s digital recruitment and propaganda efforts

Last week, as news of Brexit broke, foreign ministries throughout the world took to social media to comment on the UK’s decision to leave the EU. The German foreign ministry responded by changing its Twitter profile picture/cover photo from an image of the foreign minister to the EU flag. [...] An intriguing question is how do MFAs use their Twitter profile pictures/cover photos. Are these used to promote the national brand, or to project a certain institutional image or perhaps to make political statements as was the case with the Germany’s foreign ministry?

Pixabay

How MFAs' profile pictures/cover photos project countries' online identities.

New Zealand diplomats remain "sceptical of megaphone diplomacy'' but are increasingly making use of social media, although not in an "indiscriminate'' way. Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade chief executive Dr Brook Barrington made that point in Dunedin yesterday in an opening address to more than 100 people, at the University of Otago's 51st annual foreign policy school. Dr Barrington's address was devoted to "The Art of Diplomacy in a Digital World''.

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