Jeffrey Robertson discusses the importance of embassy websites in addition to social media.
In traditional diplomacy, a foreign public’s first impressions are formed by the architecture of embassy compounds, the grandeur of ambassadorial vehicles, the candor of diplomatic representatives, or the elegance of diplomatic functions. They serve as representations of the power, culture, and influence of the sending state. In digital diplomacy, a foreign public’s first impressions are often formed by the embassy website.
This week's headlines look at the role of the internet and social media in public diplomacy.
Sports fans and athletes from Colombia took to social media to criticise the government's plans to slash next year's national sports budget by 60 percent. [...] Thousands of Colombians have started an online campaign called #NoRecuertenMisSuenos (Don't Slash My Dreams), extolling their country's athletes and calling on the government to reverse its decision.
Women in India have been posting photographs of themselves enjoying a night out on social media in response to a politician who said a woman who was chased in her car by two men "should not have gone out so late at night".
Corneliu Bjola on how embassies and MFAs can properly respond to crises using digital tools.
Once a crisis begins to unfold, confusion about the nature, severity, and possible implications of the event is the immediate consequence to affect both authorities and the public. Ironically, this outcome is not prompted by the shortage of information about what is going on, but rather by the abundance of reports on social media channels, most of them reflecting individual reactions to the event, often times with little factual evidence to support them.
Constraints notwithstanding, a group of 10 Palestinian officials attended a weeklong workshop on “Communication Skills & Media Relations for Diplomacy” this week in Turin, Italy to craft skills for engaging with all manner of media.