• Public Diplomacy

    Congratulations Melanie Ciolek!

    Congratulations to Melanie Ciolek on winning the USC Center on Public Diplomacy’s Prize for Best Student Paper for 2010. Melanie’s paper, How Social Media Contributes to Public Diplomacy: Why Embassy Jakarta’s Facebook Outreach Improves Understanding of the Limitations and Potential for the State Department’s Use of Social Media, was published on this blog back in June. Melanie wrote “How Social Media Contributes to Public Diplomacy” as a student in my Public Diplomacy and Technology (PUBD510) last semester. (See and comment on the draft syllabus for Spring 2011.)

  • Public Diplomacy,  Social Media

    State Department and Social Media

    Have you been wondering how many “fans” there are for the State Department’s Facebook pages? Interested in knowing whether the numbers are going up or down for a particular online “property”? Look no further than this site put together by the Office of Innovation within “R”, the Office of the Under Secretary of Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs. Go there and you’ll find that as of today, there are 1,011,712 fans for the 191 pages the department maintains. There’s data by site as well. U.S. Embassy Kabul has 3,682 fans, six times as many as U.S. Embassy Brussels (623). A quick look raises questions about the validity of the data,…

  • ICT,  Now Media

    World Map of Social Networks

    Interesting data crunching from Italy on social network use around the globe. See the map at right and the data below. Some visible patterns to highlight: – Facebook has almost colonized Europe and it’s extending its domination with more than 200 millions users – QQ, leader in China, is the largest social network of the world (300 millions active accounts) – MySpace lost its leadership everywhere (except in Guam) – V Kontakte is the most popular in Russian territories – Orkut is strong in India and Brazil – Hi5 is still leading in Peru, Colombia, Ecuador and other scattered countries such as Portugal, Mongolia, Romania – Odnoklassniki is strong in…

  • Media,  Public Diplomacy

    The White House, Social Media, and Public Diplomacy

    Be sure to read the interesting op-ed by Jim Hoagland in The Washington Post titled A President Goes Friending. It’s pretty clear Mr. Hoagland doesn’t quite know what to make of the new-fangled means of communication. To his credit, he admits it: My reaction no doubt resembles that of a blacksmith at the turn of the last century catching his first thrilling, then horrifying, glimpse of a motorcar. Mr. Hoagland is not alone. The media, many public affairs officers, and governments in general, tend to view “now media” as a distinct world and not another channel of communication. Of course with any new medium of engagement there’s a fear. The…

  • Events,  Psychological Struggle,  Public Diplomacy

    Can Facebook defeat terrorism?

    Facebook, Google, YouTube, MTV, Howcast, Columbia Law School, the U.S. Department of State and Access 360 Media are bringing leaders of 17 pioneering organizations from 15 countries together with technology experts next month in New York for the first-ever conclave to empower youth against violence and oppression through the use of the latest online tools.